Is this the European UnionIs this the European Union??

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Is this the European Union

Is this the European Union ? ?

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Or this?

Or this?

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What about this?

What about this?

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How many countries are there How many countries are there

in the European Union?

in the European Union?

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How many people live in the How many people live in the

European Union?

European Union?

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The European Union:

The European Union:

493 million people

493 million people – – 27 countries 27 countries

Member states of the European Union

Candidate countries

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Founding fathers Founding fathers

New ideas for lasting peace and prosperity…

Konrad Adenauer West Germany

Robert Schuman France

Winston Churchill Great Britain

Alcide De Gasperi Italy

Jean Monnet

Honorary Citizen of Europe

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The future?

The future?

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The EU symbols The EU symbols

The European flag

The European anthem

"Ode to Joy"

Europe Day, 9 May The motto: United in diversity

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A distant dream?

A distant dream?

Before becoming a real political objective, the Before becoming a real political objective, the

idea of uniting Europe was just a dream in the idea of uniting Europe was just a dream in the

minds of philosophers and visionaries.

minds of philosophers and visionaries.

Victor Hugo, for example, imagined a peaceful Victor Hugo, for example, imagined a peaceful

‘United States of Europe’ inspired by humanistic

‘United States of Europe’ inspired by humanistic ideals.

ideals.

The dream was shattered by the terrible wars The dream was shattered by the terrible wars

that ravaged the continent during the first half that ravaged the continent during the first half

of the 20th century of the 20th century

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Hope Hope

However, a new kind of hope emerged from the rubble of However, a new kind of hope emerged from the rubble of

World War Two.

World War Two.

People who had resisted totalitarianism during the war were People who had resisted totalitarianism during the war were

determined to put an end to international hatred and rivalry determined to put an end to international hatred and rivalry

in Europe and create the conditions for lasting peace.

in Europe and create the conditions for lasting peace.

Between 1945 and 1950, a handful of courageous statesmen Between 1945 and 1950, a handful of courageous statesmen

including Robert Schuman, Konrad Adenauer, Alcide de including Robert Schuman, Konrad Adenauer, Alcide de

Gasperi and Winston Churchill set about persuading their Gasperi and Winston Churchill set about persuading their

peoples to enter a new era.

peoples to enter a new era.

New structures would be created in western Europe, based on New structures would be created in western Europe, based on

shared interests and founded upon treaties guaranteeing the shared interests and founded upon treaties guaranteeing the

rule of law and equality between all countries rule of law and equality between all countries

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23 official languages

23 official languages

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Eight enlargements Eight enlargements

1952 1973 1981 1986

1990 1995 2004 2007

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The treaties – basis for democratic The treaties – basis for democratic

cooperation built on law cooperation built on law

1952

The European Steel and Coal Community

1958

The treaties of Rome:

The European Economic Community

The European Atomic Energy Community

(EURATOM)

1987

The European Single Act: the

Single Market

1993 Treaty of European Union

– Maastricht 1999

Treaty of Amsterdam 2003

Treaty of Nice 2007

Treaty of Lisbon (signed)

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European Coal and Steel European Coal and Steel

Community (ECSC) Community (ECSC)

On 9 May 1950, the Schuman Declaration proposed the On 9 May 1950, the Schuman Declaration proposed the

establishment of a

establishment of a European Coal and Steel European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC)

Community (ECSC), which became reality with the , which became reality with the Treaty of Paris of 18 April 1951.

Treaty of Paris of 18 April 1951.

This put in place a common market in coal and steel This put in place a common market in coal and steel

between the six founding countries (Belgium, the between the six founding countries (Belgium, the

Federal Republic of Germany, France, Italy, Federal Republic of Germany, France, Italy,

Luxembourg and the Netherlands).

Luxembourg and the Netherlands).

The aim, in the aftermath of World War Two, was to The aim, in the aftermath of World War Two, was to

secure peace between Europe’s victorious and secure peace between Europe’s victorious and

vanquished nations and bring them together as vanquished nations and bring them together as

equals, cooperating within shared institutions.

equals, cooperating within shared institutions.

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Treaty of Rome Treaty of Rome

The Six then decided, on 25 March 1957 with the The Six then decided, on 25 March 1957 with the

Treaty of Rome

Treaty of Rome, to build a , to build a European Economic European Economic Community (EEC)

Community (EEC) based on a wider common market based on a wider common market covering a whole range of goods and services.

covering a whole range of goods and services.

Customs duties between the six countries were Customs duties between the six countries were

completely abolished on 1 July 1968 and common completely abolished on 1 July 1968 and common

policies, notably on trade and agriculture, were also policies, notably on trade and agriculture, were also

put in place during the 1960s.

put in place during the 1960s.

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1973 1973

So successful was this venture that Denmark, Ireland So successful was this venture that Denmark, Ireland

and the United Kingdom decided to join the and the United Kingdom decided to join the

Community.

Community.

This first enlargement, from six to nine members, took This first enlargement, from six to nine members, took

place in 1973.

place in 1973.

At the same time,

At the same time, new social and environmental new social and environmental policies

policies were implemented, and the European were implemented, and the European

Regional Development Fund (ERDF) was established in Regional Development Fund (ERDF) was established in

1975 1975

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First elections to the European First elections to the European

Parliament Parliament

June 1979 saw a decisive step forward for the June 1979 saw a decisive step forward for the

European Community, with the

European Community, with the first elections first elections to the European Parliament

to the European Parliament by direct by direct universal suffrage.

universal suffrage.

These elections are held every five years.

These elections are held every five years.

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Greece then Spain and Portugal Greece then Spain and Portugal

In 1981,

In 1981, GreeceGreece joined the Community, followed joined the Community, followed by by Spain and PortugalSpain and Portugal in 1986. in 1986.

This strengthened the Community’s presence in This strengthened the Community’s presence in

southern Europe and made it all the more southern Europe and made it all the more

urgent to expand its regional aid programmes urgent to expand its regional aid programmes

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European

European single market single market

The worldwide economic recession in the early 1980s The worldwide economic recession in the early 1980s

brought with it a wave of ‘euro-pessimism’.

brought with it a wave of ‘euro-pessimism’.

However, hope sprang anew in 1985 when the European However, hope sprang anew in 1985 when the European

Commission, under its President Jacques Delors, Commission, under its President Jacques Delors,

published a White Paper setting out a timetable for published a White Paper setting out a timetable for

completing the European

completing the European single marketsingle market by 1 January by 1 January 1993.

1993.

This ambitious goal was enshrined in the Single This ambitious goal was enshrined in the Single

European Act, which was signed in February 1986 and European Act, which was signed in February 1986 and

came into force on 1 July 1987.

came into force on 1 July 1987.

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The Fall of the Berlin Wall The Fall of the Berlin Wall

The political shape of Europe was dramatically The political shape of Europe was dramatically

changed when the

changed when the Berlin WallBerlin Wall fell in 1989. fell in 1989.

This led to the unification of Germany in October This led to the unification of Germany in October

1990 and the coming of democracy to the 1990 and the coming of democracy to the

countries of central and eastern Europe as they countries of central and eastern Europe as they

broke away from Soviet control.

broke away from Soviet control.

The Soviet Union itself ceased to exist in The Soviet Union itself ceased to exist in

December 1991.

December 1991.

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Treaty on European Union Treaty on European Union

At the same time, the member states were negotiating At the same time, the member states were negotiating

the new

the new Treaty on European UnionTreaty on European Union, which was , which was adopted by the European Council, composed of

adopted by the European Council, composed of

presidents and/or prime ministers, at Maastricht in presidents and/or prime ministers, at Maastricht in

December 1991.

December 1991.

The Treaty came into force on 1 November 1993.

The Treaty came into force on 1 November 1993.

By adding areas of intergovernmental cooperation to By adding areas of intergovernmental cooperation to

existing integrated Community structures, the Treaty existing integrated Community structures, the Treaty

created the European Union (EU).

created the European Union (EU).

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1995 1995

This new European dynamism and the This new European dynamism and the

continent’s changing geopolitical situation continent’s changing geopolitical situation

led three more countries —

led three more countries — Austria, Austria, Finland and Sweden

Finland and Sweden — to join the EU — to join the EU on 1 January 1995.

on 1 January 1995.

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single currency single currency

By then, the EU was on course for its most spectacular By then, the EU was on course for its most spectacular

achievement yet, creating a

achievement yet, creating a single currency.single currency.

The euro was introduced for financial (non-cash) The euro was introduced for financial (non-cash)

transactions in 1999, while notes and coins were transactions in 1999, while notes and coins were

issued three years later in the 12 countries of the euro issued three years later in the 12 countries of the euro

area (also commonly referred to as the euro zone).

area (also commonly referred to as the euro zone).

The euro is now a major world currency for payments The euro is now a major world currency for payments

and reserves alongside the US dollar.

and reserves alongside the US dollar.

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Lisbon strategy Lisbon strategy

In March 2000, the EU adopted the

In March 2000, the EU adopted the ‘Lisbon strategy’‘Lisbon strategy’

for modernising the European economy and enabling for modernising the European economy and enabling

it to compete on the world market with other major it to compete on the world market with other major

players such as the United States and the newly players such as the United States and the newly

industrialised countries.

industrialised countries.

The Lisbon strategy involves encouraging innovation and The Lisbon strategy involves encouraging innovation and

business investment and adapting Europe’s education business investment and adapting Europe’s education systems to meet the needs of the information society systems to meet the needs of the information society

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The Lisbon treaty - taking Europe into the 21st century

The Treaty will make the European Union:

More efficient Simpler processes, full-time president for the Council, etc.

More democratic Stronger role for the European Parliament and national parliaments, "Citizens initiative",

Charter of Fundamental Rights, etc.

More transparent Clarifies who does what, greater public access to documents and meetings, etc.

More united on High Representative for Foreign Policy, etc.

the world stage

More secure New possibilities to fight climate change and terrorism, secure energy supplies, etc.

Signed in December 2007 – enter into force when ratified by all 27 EU countries.

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The big enlargement:

The big enlargement:

healing the division of Europe healing the division of Europe

Fall of Berlin Wall – end of Communism

EU economic help begins: Phase programme

Criteria set for a country to join the EU:

• democracy and rule of law

• functioning market economy

• ability to implement EU laws

Formal negotiations on enlargement begin Copenhagen summit agrees enlargement

10 new EU members: Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia,

Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia

1989

1992

1998

2002

2004

2007 Bulgaria and Romania join the EU

Candidates

Croatia, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey

© Reuders

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enlargement on an unprecedented enlargement on an unprecedented

scale scale . .

Scarcely had the European Union grown to 15 members Scarcely had the European Union grown to 15 members

when preparations began for a new

when preparations began for a new enlargement on enlargement on an unprecedented scale

an unprecedented scale..

In the mid-1990s, the former Soviet-bloc countries In the mid-1990s, the former Soviet-bloc countries (Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, (Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland,

Romania and Slovakia), the three Baltic states that Romania and Slovakia), the three Baltic states that

had been part of the Soviet Union (Estonia, Latvia and had been part of the Soviet Union (Estonia, Latvia and

Lithuania), one of the republics of former Yugoslavia Lithuania), one of the republics of former Yugoslavia (Slovenia) and two Mediterranean countries (Cyprus (Slovenia) and two Mediterranean countries (Cyprus

and Malta) began knocking at the EU’s door.

and Malta) began knocking at the EU’s door.

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Welcome Welcome

The EU welcomed this chance to help stabilise The EU welcomed this chance to help stabilise

the European continent and to extend the the European continent and to extend the

benefits of European integration to these young benefits of European integration to these young

democracies.

democracies.

Negotiations on future membership opened in Negotiations on future membership opened in

December 1997.

December 1997.

The EU enlargement to 25 countries took place The EU enlargement to 25 countries took place on 1 May 2004 when 10 of the 12 candidates on 1 May 2004 when 10 of the 12 candidates

joined.

joined.

Bulgaria and Romania followed on 1 January Bulgaria and Romania followed on 1 January

2007.

2007.

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EU population in the world EU population in the world

Population in millions,

2007

497

1322

128 142

301

EU China Japan Russia United States

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The area of the EU compared to The area of the EU compared to

the rest of the world the rest of the world

Surface area, 1 000 km²

EU China Japan Russia United States 16 889

9327 9159

4234

365

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How rich is the EU compared to How rich is the EU compared to

the rest of the world?

the rest of the world?

EU China Japan Russia United States EU China Japan Russia United States 10 793

1 326

3676

468

10 035

24 700

6 400

27 800

10 000

37 300

Size of economy: Gross Domestic Product in billion of euros, 2006

Wealth per person: Gross Domestic Product per person in Purchasing Power Standard, 2007

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GDP per inhabitant: the spread GDP per inhabitant: the spread

of wealth of wealth

GDP per inhabitants in Purchasing Power Standards, 2007 Index where the average of the 27 EU-countries is 100

280

144

131 129 127

123 121 118 117113 113

104 102 100

94 89 87

79 77 75

67 66 63

58 56 53

38 37

Luxembourg Ireland Netherlands Austria Denmark Belgium Sweden U K Finland Germany France Italy Spain EU-27 Cyprus Greece Slovenia Czech Republic Malta Portugal Estonia Hungary Slovakia Lithuania Latvia Poland Romania Bulgaria

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How is the EU’s money spent?

How is the EU’s money spent?

Total EU budget 2008: 129.1 billion euro

= 1.03% of Gross National Income

Citizens, freedom, security and justice

1%

Other, administration 6%

Sustainable growth:

new jobs, cohesion, research

45%

The EU as a global player:

including development aid 6%

Natural resources:

agriculture, environment

43%

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Climate change – a global Climate change – a global

challenge challenge

To stop global warming, EU leaders decided in 2007 to:

To stop global warming, EU leaders decided in 2007 to:

reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% by 2020 (30% if other reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% by 2020 (30% if other developed countries do likewise)

developed countries do likewise)

improve energy efficiency by 20% by 2020improve energy efficiency by 20% by 2020

raise the share of renewable energy to 20% by 2020 (wind, solar, hydro raise the share of renewable energy to 20% by 2020 (wind, solar, hydro power, biomass)

power, biomass)

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Jobs and growth Jobs and growth Challenges:

Challenges:

Demography: Europeans live longer, have fewer children Demography: Europeans live longer, have fewer children

Globalisation: European economy faces competition from other parts of the Globalisation: European economy faces competition from other parts of the world

world

Climate change: Emission of greenhouse gases must come down Climate change: Emission of greenhouse gases must come down

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Solutions:

Solutions:

European leaders have therefore agreed on a joint strategy for:

European leaders have therefore agreed on a joint strategy for:

More research and innovationMore research and innovation

A more dynamic business environmentA more dynamic business environment

Investing in peopleInvesting in people

A greener economy A greener economy

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Research - investing in the Research - investing in the

knowledge society knowledge society

Spending on research and development in percentage of Gross Domestic Product, 2006

1.8%

3.0%

1.3%

2.6%

3.3%

EU EU objective for 2010

China Japan United States

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Enlargement and Enlargement and

neighbourhood policy neighbourhood policy

The European Union is open to any European country that The European Union is open to any European country that fulfils the democratic, political and economic criteria for fulfils the democratic, political and economic criteria for

membership.

membership.

Following several enlargements, the EU has increased from six Following several enlargements, the EU has increased from six to 27 members. Several other countries are candidates to join.

to 27 members. Several other countries are candidates to join.

Each treaty admitting a new member requires the unanimous Each treaty admitting a new member requires the unanimous approval of all member states. In addition, in advance of each approval of all member states. In addition, in advance of each new enlargement, the EU will assess its capacity to absorb the new enlargement, the EU will assess its capacity to absorb the

new member(s) and the ability of its institutions to continue new member(s) and the ability of its institutions to continue

to function properly.

to function properly.

The successive enlargements have strengthened democracy, The successive enlargements have strengthened democracy, made Europe more secure and increased its potential for

made Europe more secure and increased its potential for trade and economic growth.

trade and economic growth.

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Solidarity in practice: the EU Solidarity in practice: the EU

cohesion policy cohesion policy

2007-2013: 347 billion euro invested for infrastructure, business, environment 2007-2013: 347 billion euro invested for infrastructure, business, environment and training of workers for less well-off regions or citizens.

and training of workers for less well-off regions or citizens.

Regional fundRegional fund

Social fundSocial fund

Cohesion fundCohesion fund

Convergence objective:

regions with GDP per capita under 75% of the EU

average. 81.5% of the funds are spent on this objective.

Regional competitiveness and employment objective.

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Solidarity policies Solidarity policies

The main purpose of the solidarity policies is to support The main purpose of the solidarity policies is to support

the completion of the single market, and to correct the completion of the single market, and to correct any imbalances by means of structural measures to any imbalances by means of structural measures to

help regions lagging behind or industrial sectors help regions lagging behind or industrial sectors

encountering difficulties.

encountering difficulties.

The need for solidarity between EU countries and The need for solidarity between EU countries and

between regions became even more acute following between regions became even more acute following the recent entry of 12 newcomers with incomes well the recent entry of 12 newcomers with incomes well

below the EU average.

below the EU average.

The EU must also play its part in helping to restructure The EU must also play its part in helping to restructure

sectors of the economy which have been badly sectors of the economy which have been badly

affected by fast-growing international competition affected by fast-growing international competition

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Regional aid Regional aid

The EU’s regional policy is based on transfers of The EU’s regional policy is based on transfers of

funds from rich to poor countries.

funds from rich to poor countries.

The money is used to boost development in The money is used to boost development in

regions lagging behind, to rejuvenate industrial regions lagging behind, to rejuvenate industrial

regions in decline, to help young people and regions in decline, to help young people and

the long-term unemployed find work, to the long-term unemployed find work, to

modernise farming and to help less-favoured modernise farming and to help less-favoured

rural areas.

rural areas.

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The euro – a single currency for The euro – a single currency for

Europeans Europeans

EU countries using the euro EU countries not using the euro

Can be used everywhere in the euro area

Coins: one side with national symbols,

one side common

Notes: no national side

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Economic and monetary union Economic and monetary union

(EMU) and the euro (EMU) and the euro

The euro is the single currency of the European The euro is the single currency of the European Union. Twelve of the then 15 countries adopted Union. Twelve of the then 15 countries adopted

it for non-cash transactions from 1999 and for it for non-cash transactions from 1999 and for

all payments in 2002 when euro notes and all payments in 2002 when euro notes and

coins were issued.

coins were issued.

Three countries (Denmark, Sweden and the Three countries (Denmark, Sweden and the United Kingdom) did not participate in this United Kingdom) did not participate in this

monetary union.

monetary union.

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The new member countries are getting ready to The new member countries are getting ready to enter the euro area as soon as they fulfil the

enter the euro area as soon as they fulfil the necessary criteria.

necessary criteria.

In parallel with the objective of monetary In parallel with the objective of monetary stability, which is the responsibility of the stability, which is the responsibility of the

European Central Bank, the member states are European Central Bank, the member states are

committed to higher growth and economic committed to higher growth and economic

convergence.

convergence.

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The single market The single market

The single market is one of the European The single market is one of the European Union’s greatest achievements. Restrictions Union’s greatest achievements. Restrictions

between member countries on trade and free between member countries on trade and free

competition have gradually been eliminated, competition have gradually been eliminated,

with the result that standards of living have with the result that standards of living have

increased.

increased.

The single market has not yet become a single The single market has not yet become a single economic area. Some sectors of the economy economic area. Some sectors of the economy

(public services) are still subject to national (public services) are still subject to national

laws.

laws.

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The individual EU countries still largely have the The individual EU countries still largely have the responsibility for taxation and social welfare.

responsibility for taxation and social welfare.

The single market is supported by a number of The single market is supported by a number of related policies put in place by the EU over the related policies put in place by the EU over the

years. They help ensure that market years. They help ensure that market

liberalisation benefits as many businesses and liberalisation benefits as many businesses and

consumers as possible.

consumers as possible.

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The single market: freedom of The single market: freedom of

choice choice

Since 1993:

2.5 million new jobs

prices of phone calls and airfares halved

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Four freedoms of movement:

goods

services

people

capital

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A citizens’ Europe A citizens’ Europe

Thanks to the European Union, citizens of Thanks to the European Union, citizens of member countries can travel, live and work member countries can travel, live and work

anywhere in Europe.

anywhere in Europe.

In daily life, the EU encourages and funds In daily life, the EU encourages and funds

programmes to bring citizens closer together, programmes to bring citizens closer together,

particularly in the fields of education and particularly in the fields of education and

culture.

culture.

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A feeling of belonging to the European Union A feeling of belonging to the European Union will develop only gradually, through its tangible will develop only gradually, through its tangible

achievements and successes.

achievements and successes.

Some symbols that represent a shared Some symbols that represent a shared

European identity already exist. The most European identity already exist. The most

prominent is the single currency, but there are prominent is the single currency, but there are

also the EU flag and anthem.

also the EU flag and anthem.

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Travelling, living and working Travelling, living and working

in Europe in Europe

The first right of a European citizen is the right to The first right of a European citizen is the right to travel, work and live anywhere in the Union. The travel, work and live anywhere in the Union. The

Treaty of Maastricht enshrined this right in its chapter Treaty of Maastricht enshrined this right in its chapter

on citizenship.

on citizenship.

The EU has passed a directive establishing a system of The EU has passed a directive establishing a system of mutual recognition of higher education qualifications.

mutual recognition of higher education qualifications.

This directive applies to all university courses lasting This directive applies to all university courses lasting three years or more and is based on the principle of three years or more and is based on the principle of

mutual confidence in the quality of national education mutual confidence in the quality of national education

and training systems.

and training systems.

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Free to move

“ “ Schengen”: Schengen”:

No police or customs checks at No police or customs checks at

borders between most EU countries borders between most EU countries

Controls strengthened at EU Controls strengthened at EU external borders

external borders

More cooperation between police More cooperation between police from different EU countries

from different EU countries

You can buy and bring back any You can buy and bring back any goods for personal use when you goods for personal use when you

travel between EU countries travel between EU countries

© Corbis

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Going abroad to learn

Over two million young people have studied or pursued Over two million young people have studied or pursued

personal development in other European countries personal development in other European countries

with support from EU-programmes:

with support from EU-programmes:

Comenius: school education Comenius: school education

Erasmus: higher education Erasmus: higher education

Leonardo da Vinci: vocational trainingLeonardo da Vinci: vocational training

Grundtvig: adult education Grundtvig: adult education

Youth in Action: voluntary work and non-formal educationYouth in Action: voluntary work and non-formal education

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Improving health and the Improving health and the

environment environment

Pollution knows no borders – joint action needed Pollution knows no borders – joint action needed EU action has helped bring us:

EU action has helped bring us:

Cleaner bathing waterCleaner bathing water

Much less acid rain Much less acid rain

Lead-free petrol Lead-free petrol

Free and safe disposal of old electronic equipmentFree and safe disposal of old electronic equipment

Strict rules on food safety from farm to fork Strict rules on food safety from farm to fork

More organic and quality farming More organic and quality farming

More effective health warnings on cigarettesMore effective health warnings on cigarettes

Registration and control of all chemicals (REACH)Registration and control of all chemicals (REACH)

© Van Parys Media

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An area of freedom, security An area of freedom, security

and justice and justice

Charter of Fundamental Rights Charter of Fundamental Rights

Joint fight against terrorism Joint fight against terrorism

Police and law-enforcers from Police and law-enforcers from different countries cooperate

different countries cooperate

Coordinated asylum and Coordinated asylum and immigration policies

immigration policies

Civil law cooperation Civil law cooperation

© European Union Police Mission

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The EU: an exporter of peace The EU: an exporter of peace

and prosperity and prosperity

World trade rules World trade rules

Common foreign Common foreign and security policy and security policy

Development Development assistance and assistance and

humanitarian aid humanitarian aid

EU runs the peacekeeping operations and the

rebuilding of society in war-torn countries like

Bosnia-Herzegovina.

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Freedom, security and justice Freedom, security and justice

The opening of internal borders between EU member The opening of internal borders between EU member states is a very tangible benefit for ordinary people, states is a very tangible benefit for ordinary people,

allowing them to travel freely without being subject to allowing them to travel freely without being subject to

border controls.

border controls.

However, this freedom of internal movement must go However, this freedom of internal movement must go hand in hand with increased controls at the EU’s

hand in hand with increased controls at the EU’s external borders so as to combat effectively the external borders so as to combat effectively the

trafficking of people and drugs, organised crime, trafficking of people and drugs, organised crime,

illegal immigration and terrorism.

illegal immigration and terrorism.

The EU countries cooperate in the area of policing and The EU countries cooperate in the area of policing and justice so as to make Europe safer and more secure.

justice so as to make Europe safer and more secure.

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How does the EU work?

How does the EU work?

The Council of the European Union, which The Council of the European Union, which

represents the member states, is the EU’s main represents the member states, is the EU’s main

decision-taking body.

decision-taking body.

When it meets at Heads of State or When it meets at Heads of State or

Government level, it becomes the European Government level, it becomes the European

Council whose role is to provide the EU with Council whose role is to provide the EU with

political impetus on key issues.

political impetus on key issues.

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The European Parliament, which The European Parliament, which

represents the people, shares legislative represents the people, shares legislative

and budgetary power with the Council of and budgetary power with the Council of

the European Union.

the European Union.

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The European Commission, which The European Commission, which

represents the common interest of the EU, represents the common interest of the EU,

is the main executive body.

is the main executive body.

It has the right to propose legislation and It has the right to propose legislation and ensures that EU policies are properly

ensures that EU policies are properly implemented.

implemented.

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Three key players Three key players

The European Parliament - voice of the people

Hans-Gert Pöttering, President of the European Parliament

The council of Ministers

- voice of the Member States

Javier Solana, Secretary-General of the Council of the European Union and

High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy

The European Commission

- promoting the common interest José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission

(67)

Three pillars Three pillars

The European Union

The Treaties

European Community

domain (most of common policies)

Common foreign and

security policy

Police and judicial cooperation

in criminal matters

(68)

European European Parliament Parliament

The EU institutions

Court of

Justice Court of

Auditors Economic and Social

Committee Committee of the Regions Council of Ministers

(Council of the EU) European Commission

European Investment Bank Agencies European Central Bank

European Council (summit)

(69)

How EU laws are made

Citizens, interests groups, experts: discuss, consult

Commission: makes formal proposal

Parliament and Council of Ministers: decide jointly

Commission and Court of Justice: monitor implementation

National or local authorities: implement

(70)

The decision-making triangle The decision-making triangle

The European Union is more than just a The European Union is more than just a

confederation of countries, but it is not a confederation of countries, but it is not a

federal state.

federal state.

It is, in fact, a new type of structure that does It is, in fact, a new type of structure that does

not fall into any traditional legal category.

not fall into any traditional legal category.

Its political system is historically unique and has Its political system is historically unique and has

been constantly evolving over more than 50 been constantly evolving over more than 50

years.

years.

(71)

The Treaties (known as ‘primary’ legislation), are The Treaties (known as ‘primary’ legislation), are

the basis for a large body of ‘secondary’

the basis for a large body of ‘secondary’

legislation which has a direct impact on the legislation which has a direct impact on the

daily lives of EU citizens.

daily lives of EU citizens.

The secondary legislation consists mainly of The secondary legislation consists mainly of

regulations, directives and recommendations regulations, directives and recommendations

adopted by the EU institutions.

adopted by the EU institutions.

(72)

These laws, along with EU policies in general, are These laws, along with EU policies in general, are the result of decisions taken by the institutional the result of decisions taken by the institutional

triangle made up of the Council (representing triangle made up of the Council (representing

national governments), the European national governments), the European

Parliament (representing the people) and the Parliament (representing the people) and the

European Commission (a body independent of European Commission (a body independent of

EU governments that upholds the collective EU governments that upholds the collective

European interest).

European interest).

(73)

The Council of the European Union The Council of the European Union

and the European Council and the European Council

The Council of the European Union (also known as the The Council of the European Union (also known as the Council of Ministers) is the EU’s main decision-making Council of Ministers) is the EU’s main decision-making

body.

body.

The EU member states take it in turns to hold the The EU member states take it in turns to hold the Council Presidency for a six-month period.

Council Presidency for a six-month period.

Every Council meeting is attended by one minister Every Council meeting is attended by one minister from each EU country.

from each EU country.

Which ministers attend a meeting depends on which Which ministers attend a meeting depends on which topic is on the agenda: foreign affairs, agriculture, topic is on the agenda: foreign affairs, agriculture,

industry, transport, the environment, etc.

industry, transport, the environment, etc.

(74)

The Council has legislative power, which it shares with The Council has legislative power, which it shares with the European Parliament under the ‘co-decision

the European Parliament under the ‘co-decision procedure’.

procedure’.

In addition to this, the Council and the Parliament In addition to this, the Council and the Parliament

share equal responsibility for adopting the EU budget.

share equal responsibility for adopting the EU budget.

The Council also concludes international agreements The Council also concludes international agreements that have been negotiated by the Commission.

that have been negotiated by the Commission.

(75)

According to the Treaties, the Council has to According to the Treaties, the Council has to take its decisions either by a simple majority take its decisions either by a simple majority

vote, a ‘qualified majority’ vote or unanimously, vote, a ‘qualified majority’ vote or unanimously,

depending on the subject to be decided.

depending on the subject to be decided.

The Council has to agree unanimously on The Council has to agree unanimously on important questions such as amending the important questions such as amending the

Treaties, launching a new common policy or Treaties, launching a new common policy or

allowing a new country to join the Union.

allowing a new country to join the Union.

(76)

In most other cases, qualified majority In most other cases, qualified majority voting is used.

voting is used.

This means that a Council decision is This means that a Council decision is

adopted if a specified minimum number of adopted if a specified minimum number of

votes are cast in its favour.

votes are cast in its favour.

The number of votes allocated to each EU The number of votes allocated to each EU country roughly reflects the size of its

country roughly reflects the size of its population.

population.

(77)

United Kingdom

The European Parliament – The European Parliament –

voice of the people voice of the people

13 24 78

78 14

Italy Ireland Hungary 24 Greece Germany 99 France Finland

Estonia 6 Denmark 14

24 Czech Republic

6 Cyprus

Bulgaria 18

24 Belgium

Austria 18

Decides EU laws and budget together with Council of Ministers

Democratic supervision of all the EU’s work

Total 785

78 19 Sweden

54 Spain

7 Slovenia

14 Slovakia

Romania 35

Portugal 24

54 Poland

Netherlands 27

5 Malta

Luxembourg 6 Lithuania 13

9 Latvia

Number of members elected in each country

(78)

The European Parliament The European Parliament

The European Parliament is the elected body The European Parliament is the elected body that represents the EU’s citizens.

that represents the EU’s citizens.

It exercises political supervision over the EU’s It exercises political supervision over the EU’s activities and takes part in the legislative

activities and takes part in the legislative process.

process.

Since 1979, members of the European Since 1979, members of the European

Parliament (MEPs) have been directly elected, Parliament (MEPs) have been directly elected,

by universal suffrage, every five years.

by universal suffrage, every five years.

(79)

The European political parties The European political parties

Number of seats in the European Parliament per political group (March 2008)

European United Left - Nordic Green Left 41 Socialist Group

215

Greens/European Free Alliance 43

Independence/

Democracy 24

Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe

101 European People’s Party

(Christian Democrats) and European Democrats 288

Union for Europe of the Nations 44

Non-attached members and temporarily empty seats 29

Total : 785

(80)

The Parliament takes part in the The Parliament takes part in the legislative work of the EU at three legislative work of the EU at three

levels:

levels:

Under the Under the ‘cooperation’ procedure‘cooperation’ procedure, ,

introduced by the Single European Act in 1987, introduced by the Single European Act in 1987,

the European Parliament can give its opinion on the European Parliament can give its opinion on

draft directives and regulations proposed by the draft directives and regulations proposed by the

European Commission, which is asked to European Commission, which is asked to

amend its proposals to take account of amend its proposals to take account of

Parliament’s position.

Parliament’s position.

(81)

Since 1987, there has also been the Since 1987, there has also been the

‘assent’ procedure

‘assent’ procedure, under which the , under which the

European Parliament must give its assent European Parliament must give its assent

to international agreements negotiated by to international agreements negotiated by

the Commission and to any proposed the Commission and to any proposed

enlargement of the European Union.

enlargement of the European Union.

(82)

The 1992 Treaty of Maastricht introduced the The 1992 Treaty of Maastricht introduced the ‘co-decision ‘co-decision procedure

procedure, which puts the Parliament on an equal footing , which puts the Parliament on an equal footing with the Council when legislating on a whole series of

with the Council when legislating on a whole series of

important issues including the free movement of workers, the important issues including the free movement of workers, the

internal market, education, research, the environment, trans- internal market, education, research, the environment, trans-

European networks, health, culture, consumer protection, etc.

European networks, health, culture, consumer protection, etc.

The European Parliament has the power to throw out proposed The European Parliament has the power to throw out proposed legislation in these fields if an absolute majority of members legislation in these fields if an absolute majority of members

of Parliament vote against the Council’s ‘common position’.

of Parliament vote against the Council’s ‘common position’.

The Treaty has made provision for a conciliation procedure.

The Treaty has made provision for a conciliation procedure.

(83)

Council of Ministers – voice of Council of Ministers – voice of

the member states the member states

One minister from each EU country

Presidency: rotates every six months

Decides EU laws and budget together with Parliament

Manages the Common Foreign and Security Policy

Figure

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References

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