This study focuses on the implementation of the Munitions Company Law passed by the Imperial Diet in Japan in 1943 that not only highlighted the stateness of capital but also fostered national intervention in the management of business. Policy differences between the imperial and colonial governments regarding the implementation of this law, and their conflicts over administrative rights over munitions, are examined in this study, and the Government-General of Joseon (Chosēn)’s opposition to the Japanese imperial government’s principle of unitary control within the empire, especially regarding the implementation of the Munitions Company Law, is analyzed from the standpoint of the history of economic policy at the colonial government level. In March 1944, the Government-General of Joseon began administrative negotiations with the imperial government regarding the implementation of the Munitions Company Law in Joseon leading to the reorganization of organizations related to the administration of munitions in accordance with the wider reorganization of the government structure and the implementation of an independent munitions mobilization policy known as the munitions production responsibility system. Although contrary to the original wishes of the imperial government, in September 1944, months of negotiations resulted in split, not unitary, control based on comprehensive authority of the Governor-General in September 1944. In other words, the Government-General of Joseon sought throughout the wartime period to enhance its colonial rule and the effectiveness of munitions mobilization by strengthening its autonomy vis-à-vis the imperial government in terms of industrial administration. This line of reasoning inevitably clashes with the assertions of Yamamoto Yuzo, who refused to recognize the comprehensive administrative authority of the Governor-General of Joseon, and evaluated the policy of ‘administrative integration within the empire’ implemented by the imperial government at the end of 1942 as the epitome of the institutional perfection reached by its assimilation-based ruling ideology.
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