Tuesday, February 07, 2006

The EU turns 14!

"Ministers from the 12 countries in the European Community (EC) have taken another step towards political and economic union in Maastricht. The foreign and finance ministers of the EC member states have signed the Treaty on European Union and the Maastricht Final Act, agreed in the southern Dutch town last December after years of debate. Officially the EC will now be known as the European Union (EU) and a definite timetable and framework for economic and monetary union has been laid down. The EU will take on new responsibilities for a common foreign and security policy and for home and judicial affairs - such as asylum, immigration, drugs and terrorism. Many European governments regard the treaties as a compromise between those who want to move rapidly towards full union and those - especially Britain - who want a looser arrangement. Britain has opted out of the new social chapter - concerning workers' rights and pay, but people in all 12 countries are now European citizens with rights to live and work in any other EU state."

In February 7th, 1992 the Maastricht treaties were signed and made the European Union official.


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