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POL207Y1 (41)
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Europe's Way Out of Eurosclerosis

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Political Science
Prof Hilz

Europes Way Out of EurosclerosisSummit of The HagueCoordination of foreign policies and the first steps toward a common currency and monetary policy Werner PlanThis failed in the world economic turbulence of the 1970sThe first enlargement of the European Communities in 1973Britain Ireland and DenmarkNew FrancoGerman Leadership since 1974The Bretton Woods system of fixed exchange rates was thought of as a security for exchange rates in the West but it came to an end because of the inability of the US government to secure the former exchange of US dollars against goldThe problem for Europe was that the abandonment of the BW system produced a lack of stability in global financial systemsThey had to find a new alternative to stabilize the exchange ratesFrom the integrationist perspective the fact that there had been the aim to establish a common currency was quite a positive development because that had been unthinkable in the 60s but there was still no common ground to realize this project because rivalries returnedValerie Gicard dEstaing and Helmut Schimdt tried to undertake a approach by adapting to the international environment and zero sum relations between the membersThe main element was the establishment of the European Council in December 1974Meetings of the heads of government were planned on a regular basis to help steer the European CommunityThe Commissions legal monopoly to introduce bills had already been discussed and the EC signalled changes to the institutional structure of the CommunityThere was a further weakening of the supranational elements of the Community specifically the CommissionThe agreement reached in Paris in 1974 to henceforth discuss problems confronting Europe on a regular basis underlined the desire of the leaders to be the superior decision making authorityThe EC was not an official institution of the Community it was a simple agreement between member statesThe establishment of the European Council further weakened the Commission by creating competition for legal law makingEssentially it was precisely the relationship between the Commission Council of Ministers and the EC showed the old limitations were not necessarily crippling to the CommunityIssues blocked by the Commission could be discussed and precleared by the European CouncilThe First direct election of the European Parliament occurred in 1979British EC Accession in 1973Significantly the initiative of a common economic agreement existed outside the treaty realmThe UK was still oscillating between a firm commitment to the Community and pressure to leave the Community as soon as possibleThis division still exists today and is represented by a domestic split between the Labour proCommunity and Tory antiCommunity governmentsThere was a distinct lack of coordination between countries at the monetary levelThe German Mark was the stable currency at the time and no one wanted to borrow from them
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