Europe — Toward 2001 by Peter Coffey (auth.)

By Peter Coffey (auth.)

THEBACKGROUND Why a publication on Europe - towards the yr 200l? There are primary the reason why a eu may still embark upon the sort of unsafe company. First, whilst the Treaty on ecu Union (popularly referred to as the Maastricht Treaty, and, hereafter often called the Treaty during this advent) was once signed in February 1992, it used to be agreed that the heads of presidency of the ecu Member States may gather, in 1996, to check its workings. This assembly should be often called the Intergovernmental convention (IGC). moment, by way of the tip of the century, it's convinced that preparations can have been made for the admission of a few nations of primary and jap Europe into the eu Union (EU). as a result, in spite of or with no the conserving of the IGC, will probably be urgently essential to reform a few of the Community's guidelines - particularly the typical Agricultural coverage (CAP) and the structural rules that are associated, for instance, 2 Europe - towards 2001 with the nearby and Social cash - ahead of those nations turn into individuals. Failure to do that may bring about financial ruin for the european. of just about equivalent significance is the reform of the associations and the particular workings of the group. Already with 12 Member States, it used to be tricky adequate to control issues every day. Now, as extra international locations subscribe to the Union, issues might actually grind to a cease. hence, alterations during this quarter are indispensable.

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Apparently, the Parliament (according to its President, Klaus Haensch) has not availed itself to this possibility because it did not wish to "embarrass" the Commission! However, when examining the workings of the Commission, the Council observes that the "clear" dependency of that body on the Parliament (through the investiture process) "could bring the institutional balance into question". Nevertheless, the Council expresses satisfaction with the functioning of the co-decison procedure. In contrast, in the field of external relations, the Council found that the Commission has been taking liberties!

Furthermore, it is the Commission which is responsible for the daily management of the Community'S policies - notably trade, competition policy and the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). To be absolutely objective, it is true that the Treaty on European Union did give some powers to the European Parliament to initiate legislation. However, in a report published by the Council of Ministers, earlier this year, it was observed that Parliament had hardly availed itself of this important innovation. Clearly, this situation will have to change if we are to make the Europe - 42 Toward 2001 Community more accountable to its citizens.

More realistically, the author believes that we should aim at ·creating a European Confederation - a kind of European Switzerland. In the meantime, in anticipation of next year's Intergovernmental Conference, there are a number of important issues which should be confronted as a matter of urgent necessity. In The Backround to Institutional Reform 49 particular, the following ones would have to be resolved even if EU Member States were to contemplate nothing more than a loose confederation as an ultimate form of political union: 1.

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