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European Union

It is a supernational and Intergovernmental union of 27 states
Established in 1992 by the Treaty of EU – The Maastricht Treaty
It is the de facto successor of the six member European Economic Community founded in 1957 (The Treaty of Rome)
The Treaty of Paris – 1951 had the foundation for EU – European Coal and Steel Community of West Germany, Italy, Benelex and France – this changed to European Economic Comm and then to European Comm.

EU Institutions:

  • European Parliament
  • European Council
  • Council of the European Union – the legislative branch apart from the EU parliament
  • European Central Bank – 13 member states with Euro (estd in 1998 and HQ in Frankfurt)
  • European Commission – acts as an executive
  • The European Court of Justice – Luxembourg

The seat of the European Commission is in Brussels with the President – Jose Manuel Barroso

European Parliament Head – Hans Gert Pottering, and the seat is in Strasbourg

Council of the European Union, Head – Frank-Walter Steinmeier

Sectretariat of the European Parliament – Luxembourg

President of the European Council – Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany

High Representative of the CSFP – Javier Solana

Seat of the European council at present – Germany

Commissioner for Trade for the EU bloc in WTO – Peter Mendelson

Members of the EU:

  • France
  • Italy
  • Germany
  • Luxembourg
  • Belgium
  • Netherlands
  • Denmark
  • UK
  • Ireland
  • Greece
  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • Austria
  • Sweden
  • Finland
  • Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta Poland, Slovekia, Slovenia (all these added in 2004)
  • Romania and Bulgaria (joined in 2007)

Enlargement Candidates:

  • Turkey
  • Croatia
  • The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Pillars of the Treaty of Maastricht:

  • European Communities
  • The Common Foreign and Security Policy – CFSP (it acknowledges NATO responsible for the territorial defence and Peace keeping in Europe)
  • Justice and Home Affairs

ERASMUS program for Higher Education

Bologna Process for Higher Education

Global Positioning System – Galileo – Global Navigation Satellite System – to be built by EU and launched by the European Space Agency (ESA is a non EU organization and so is the EFTA)

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