European Citizenship and the National Elites of Southern Europe
This shows how, through well-aimed efforts and by building up mutual confidence, historical enemies can become close partners. On 23 June , the citizens of the United Kingdom voted to withdraw from the European Union in a referendum and subsequently became the first and only member to trigger Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union TEU. The vote was in favour of leaving the EU by a margin of From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Part of a series on the. Pre ideas — — — — —present. History of Europe History of the euro History of defence integration History of enlargement.
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Timeline Pre ideas — — — — —present. Organisation European Communities. European Coal and Steel Community. European Economic Community. European Atomic Energy Community. European Community.
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Schengen Rules. Franco-British alliance. The focus has now shifted towards security and Islamist radicalization within individual EU countries. Although the total number of people killed by successive terrorist attacks in Europe remains relatively low, also in historical comparison, public concern remains very high, driving also important measures to remedy deficiencies in counter-terrorist cooperation among European countries. Despite the Brexit shock, the economic situation in the EU and the Eurozone area has continued on its path of gradual improvement during the past year.
Real economic activity is growing, thanks to strong consumption, the ECB's still very accommodating monetary policies, low oil prices and the weaker Euro.
These forces should help produce growth of 1. There are, however, several risks clouding the economic outlook for Europe. Trade policy especially has emerged as a possible new crisis area for the EU in the years ahead. Since then, the European Court of Justice has ruled that any new trade agreement that goes beyond external tariff cuts, which is the case for all modern trade agreements, must be ratified not only by the European Parliament, but also by all national — and some sub-national — parliaments across the EU 39 in total.
Next in line to be ratified is the trade agreement with Singapore. Even a much less ambitious transatlantic agreement is not certain to be ratified, given widespread doubts about its possible impact on public services as well as environmental and food standards, particularly in Germany. Meanwhile, the long-term outlook for the Eurozone remains tainted by the seeming inability of two of its core members — France and Italy — to implement meaningful reforms.
Both countries are now in election mode, and much will depend on the outcome of their respective polls. If Francois Fillon wins in France and a reinvigorated Matteo Renzi returns in Italy, prospects for reform and Eurozone stability will look good. If paralysis continues, however, doubts about the sustainability of the Eurozone will resurface in due course. Against this backdrop of risks, we should not forget that some European economies remain among the most competitive in the world.
In the latest rankings of global competitiveness from the World Economic Forum, six European countries were ranked among the top 10 and seven more among the top In its endeavour to prepare European societies for the digital future, the EU has made some incremental progress in , although the process remains slow in view of the complexity and sensitivity of some of the issues involved.
This was reflected in the process that led to the adoption of the General Data Protection Regulation GDPR , which will come into force in May , as well as in the eventual agreement with the US on the new Safe Harbour agreement on data transfers.
In both cases, privacy concerns loomed large in the debate, with the European Court of Justice taking a particularly strict line. There is also a significant risk that the Trump administration will go back on some of the assurances on surveillance issues given to non-US citizens. This could create significant risks to the rapidly developing trans-Atlantic data economy with its increasingly important digital value chains. In June , the EU published its European Global Strategy, attempting to set out a coherent framework for its relations with the outside world.
From this flowed both a new level of cooperation with NATO on meeting different "hybrid" threats, as well as plans for new steps in security and defence cooperation inside the EU. The Minsk process to deal with Russia's aggression against Ukraine continued to be run by Germany and France, but in substance went nowhere, with Ukrainian soldiers and civilians killed in continued low-level attrition fighting in the Donbas area.
EU sanctions on Russia have accordingly been extended for a further six months. Syria peace talks, started in a UN framework, continued bilaterally between the US and Russia, but have now been taken over by Russia and Turkey with a role also for Iran. Prospects are uncertain, at best. On a positive note there is now a serious possibility of resolving the issue of a bitterly divided Cyprus — although the outcome of the twin referendums to ratify a possible deal remains hard to predict.
The politics of Europe, along with the rest of the Western world, has entered a new period of volatility.
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The EU itself seems to have halted the slide in support and legitimacy it has suffered in recent years, at least for now. One of the effects of Brexit has been to reduce support in the remaining 27 countries for the idea of leaving the EU, although this probably has been driven more by fear of the uncertainty associated with leaving the EU than genuine support for the EU process. The latest Eurobarometer polls, released in November, also show that the decline in confidence in the EU has been arrested.