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The European Union
Transcript of The European Union
The European Union is currently made up of 28 countries that have a total population of 500 million people.
The six founding countries are:
From resistance fighters to lawyers, the founding fathers were a diverse group of people who held the same ideals: a peaceful, united and prosperous Europe.
May 9, 1950 – Schuman Plan is proposed to deepen cooperation among European
countries; this date is now celebrated as “Europe Day”
The European Union is set up with the aim of ending the frequent and bloody wars between european countries, wihich culminated in WWII
April 19, 1951 – The Coal and Steel Treaty is signed so that none of the members can
make weapons of war to use against another member
The Coal and Steel Treaty
March 25, 1957 – The Treaty of Rome is signed creating the European Economic
Community (EEC) or ‘common market’ so that goods and services can move freely
across international borders of the six member countries
Treaty of Rome
What Makes the European Union Unique?
Countries voluntarily agreeing to set
up common institutions to which they delegate some of their sovereignty so
that decisions on specific matters of
joint interest, can be made by a
12 Stars (never changes)
Represent the perfection completeness,harmony and unity of the peoples of Europe
The European Flag
The melody used to symbolize the EU comes from the Ninth Symphony composed in 1823 by Ludwig Van Beethoven, when he set music to the
"Ode to Joy"
In the universal language of music, this anthem expresses the European ideals of freedom, peace and solidarity.
The EU is based on the rule of law: everything that it does is founded on treaties, voluntarily and democratically agreed by all member countries.
Created the European Union and led to the creation of the single European currency, the euro.
Feb 7, 1992
What began as a purely
has evolved into an organization spanning policy areas, from
A name change from the EEC to the European Union (EU) in 1993 reflected this.
The EU is active in a wide range of topics, from human rights to transport and trade.
Audiovisual and media
Development and Cooperation
Digital economy & society
Economic and monetary affairs
Education, training and youth
Employment and social affairs
Foreign and security policy
Humanitarian aid and Civil Protection
Justice and Home Affairs
Maritime affairs and fisheries
Research and innovation
Thanks to the abolition of border controls between EU countries, people can travel freely throughout most of the continent. And it's become much easier to live, work and travel abroad in Europe.
The single or 'internal' market is the EU's main economic engine, enabling most goods, services, money and people to move freely.
Another key objective is to develop this huge resource to ensure that Europeans can draw the maximum benefit from it.
There are 3 main institutions involved in EU legislation:
European Parliament, which represents the EU’s citizens and is directly elected by them;
Council of the European Union, which represents the governments of the individual member countries.
(The Presidency of the Council is shared by the member states on a rotating basis.)
European Commission, which represents the interests of the Union as a whole.
In principle, the Commission proposes new laws, and the Parliament and Council adopt them. The Commission and the member countries then implement them, and the Commission ensures that the laws are properly applied and implemented.
The Law Making Process
7% of the world's population
30% of global GDP
The EU does not safeguard peace in Europe
National sovereignty is perfectly compatible with free trade and friendly co-operation in a Europe of self-governing liberal democracies.
Arguments against the European Union
The EU is too expensive and doesn't work
Cost for wealthy members are more than the benefits they receive.
Money is wasted on outdated government programs
The poorer nations get more EU money for support than the wealthy
EU regulations make it more difficult for nations to do business through excessive government regulation
The European Community was set up as an economic organization. However it has expanded its role to cover many areas where it would be better for member states to make decisions.
The EU is too Powerful
The European Union has a lot of power but is much less accountable to the people than national governments.
The EU is Undemocratic
Most EU decisions are made or shaped by the EU Commission which is led by unelected Commissioners and run by an appointed bureaucracy.
Turnout at European Parliament elections is so low that it is difficult to proclaim its legitimacy.
Many of the things that the EU does are based on the principle of
(decisions are made by international institutions, not by individual states.)
In order for this to work, member states have to agree (normally through signing a treaty) to hand over sovereignty to the EU.
The EU Undermines the Nation State
The EU often ends up reaching a compromise that no-one finds satisfactory because it always has to try to please all of its members