Sanaa Ahmed


In a world where the dominant dynamic of economic regulation is one of deregulation, financial-sector standards such as prudential regulations, accounting standards, as well as the regulation of corruption, securities, and money laundering have been ratcheted up and most countries have complied meekly. Why? The answer to this question lies in the ‘how’. This paper argues that the increasing currency of global standards and regulations are an indication of the pervasive nature of control exercised by the regulators. By setting up a protective, technicality-centred discourse around financial regulation, the regulators characterise it as an essentially technical and apolitical matter, and use the characterisation to infer legitimacy for themselves as disinterested and skilled technicians. It is argued that the nature of regulation – the structuring of a regulatory web, the governance structures of regulatory institutions, as well as the enforcement mechanisms deployed – preclude any meaningful accountability. This paper submits that this control is symptomatic of a new kind of political control and contends that its aims must be interrogated.

Custom Citation

Sanaa Ahmed, 'The Politics of Financial Regulation' (2015) 11(1) Socio-Legal Review 61

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