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Where the EU Will Go

Posted October. 30, 2002 22:45,   


`How the European Union (EU) will be operated for the next 50 years?`

The future-planning project of the EU, which is planned to be done by next June, is being brought forth with much difficulty. The UK and France have already collided over agricultural subsidy between member countries, and it shows a sign of internal disturbance after the first draft of the Constitution of the EU was publicized.

The `March to East strategy` has been started by accepting 10 eastern European countries as new members, but it seems not easy to conclude it because of the situation that the national power gap between member countries must be widen. And there is a worry that even the existing `solidarity` might be shaken because the competition between the UK, France, and Germany to control the hegemony has been added on top of it.

▽The UK, “We were betrayed.”=The loudest plosive was exploded over the reformation of the agricultural subsidy. Now, based on the `CAP,` about 42 billion Euro (about 52 trillion won), which is as much as the half of the annual budget of the EU, is being paid as the agricultural subsidy. It is a structure that Germany, the UK, Sweden, and the Netherlands, which have strong industrial structure, usually pay for it and France, which is an agricultural country, is taking advantage of it. The UK has been raising her voice and saying, “Since most of the new members, who will join in 2004, are agricultural countries, the reformation of the CAP must be done before `marching to east.`”

However, the British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who attended the EU Summit in Brussels on the 24th, got furious after knowing the fact that the French President Jacques Sirak and the German Prime Minister Gerhardt Schroder conferred on `keeping the subsidy policy under the condition of setting the limit.` The Prime Minister Blair, who unwillingly signed the unsatisfactory reformation, criticized the Summit, and the President Sirak, who was offended by that, canceled the Summit between two countries planned at the end of the year.

▽Small countries, “President for who?”=The first draft of the Constitution, which was publicized on the 28th proposed to △changed the present name EU to `the United States of Europe` or `the United Europe,` △establish `the European National Congress` consisted with the Congressmen of each country and the members of the European Congress, and △create the European Presidency.

The most debatable part was the creation of the European Presidency. The first draft reasoned that the current system, which each member country takes the Chair in every six month, is `violating consistency and weak in representation.`

The former French President Val y Giscard d`Estaing gave the idea for creating the Presidency and big countries like the UK and Spain is supporting the idea. Germany supports it under the condition of strengthening her power in the EU Executive Committee.

However, small countries like Belgium and the Netherlands are showing their discontent saying `the rights and interests of small countries are not easy to be protected.` The Prime Minister of Denmark, which is the current Chair country, warned, “One must not forget the EU was created under the big principle of equality between member countries.”

▽Other problems=The name `United States of Europe` is also not simple. It is because the current loose economical union, which each country is guaranteed the independency, can be developed to a super country like America. If that happens, the states of the UK and France, which showed their influences in international relationships as Permanent Member of the UN Security Council, might be unclear.

Rae-Jeong Park ecopark@donga.com