The EU

The EU was set up to create a joined economy of Europe due to the conflict and poor living that Europe endeavoured during the Second World War. Winston Churchill called for a “kind of United States of Europe in a speech at the Switzerland, Zurich University on 19th of September 1946. The first sign of the European Union being set up was the partnership formed by Germany and France in 1950 to work together in the coal and steel industry. Later on that year, France officially proposed to create the first concrete foundation of a European federation. Six countries (Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands) joined from the very beginning. The ECC (European Economic Community) was set up in 1957 which enabled Europe to trade in a common market where people could move freely and goods could be bought and sold between member states. In 1973 three new member states joined the EU, those being the UK, Denmark and Ireland. Norway refused the E.U’s invitation to become a partner in a referendum. In 1981 Greece joined, followed by Spain and Portugal in 1986. In 1990 the Berlin Wall was knocked down after communism collapsed in East Germany and so East and West Germany joined into the single country Germany. This recent collapse of communism in Eastern Europe has lead to another 13 states putting forward applications to join the E.U including Turkey, Cyprus, Malta, and Switzerland. Austria, Sweden and Finland were accepted and joined in 1995.In January 2002 the introduction of the single European Currency was set up in Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain.