Single Market and Community’s Economic Foundations
In the 1986 the European Economic Community nad become known simply as European Community. It’s member states had a population of 322 million and accounted for just over fifth of all world trade. The EC had it’s own administrative structure and an independent body of law, and it’s citizens had direct representation through the European Parliament, which also gave them a psychological and political stake in the evolution of the Community.
However, progress towards integration remained uneven. The creation of a common market was one of the key goals of the Treaty of Rome, but there was still a long way to go; the customs union was in place, but barriers remained to the free movement of people and capital, including different national technical, health, and quality standards, and varying levels if indirect taxation.
Back in the 1970s the term “Eurosclerosis” had begun to gain currency to describe the economic stagnation, double-digit inflation and high unemployment that were afflicting Europe. European businesses were not competing well on the global market, scientists and industrialists were failing to collaborate, and the remaining barriers to internal trade stood in the way of a true single market. There could be no single market without monetaryunion and complete financial integration, and it would be a reatively sort hop in neofunctionalist terms from monetary union to the creation of the single currency, a controversial idea because it would mean a certain loss of national sovereignty. Monetary Union was also fundamental to the idea of real economic union would represent a significant move towards political union. These issues had now begun to concern EC leaders, who were soon to take the there most important steps in the process of integration since the treaties of Paris and Rome: the launch of the European Monetary System, and agreement of the Single European Act and the Treaty on European Union.…
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