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Pregledni rad


Huguette Laermans ; Visoka škola St.-Niklaas-Belgija, Odjel za ekonomiju, Belgija
Paul Roosens ; Sveučilište u Antwerpenu, Fakultet primjenjene ekonomije, Belgija

Puni tekst: engleski pdf 361 Kb

str. 193-210

preuzimanja: 1.797



At the time of writing this article, the European Union (EU) is fifty years old. With its 27 member states today, and with Croatia and other countries to join in the future as well, the EU is no doubt one of the most successful economic integration blocs in the world. Nevertheless economic integration or regionalism always will remain a second best solution compared to multilateral trade liberalization. In the Treaty of Rome (1957), the customs union was chosen as the basic option for economic integration, and not the free trade area which was adopted for instance by NAFTA and EFTA. The choice for the customs union relies more on political than on economic arguments. Since the achievement of the customs union in 1968, the EU became over the years a common market, an economic union, and a monetary union limited to the countries that adopted the euro in the meantime. The EU as a market economy requires free interaction between producers and consumers. There is however in customs union theory some built in bias in favor of the producers. This tendency is confirmed by many producer oriented policies in the EU, and these are not sufficiently compensated by the soft policy on consumer protection. The performance of the EU is not optimal in fields such as efficiency, effectiveness, representation, and accountability. The Constitution offers a regulatory framework for a better performance of the EU. Unfortunately, the Constitution has been rejected in 2005 by the negative referendum in France and the Netherlands. On 23 June 2007, the heads of state of the EU decided to go ahead with a scaled down version of the Constitution. Implementation of this Reform Treaty is expected in 2009.

Ključne riječi

economic integration; customs union; producers; consumers; politicians; Constitution; Reform Treaty

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