The European Union From A British Perspective: What Is It And Should We [Britain] Deepen Our Intergration?

1156 words - 5 pages

Of course there are the many arguments regarding European integration and the part that the UK should play in Europe. The deepening of European integration could result in some benefits for companies. It would allow many companies to expand into Europe more easily as they would have a pan-European perspective as opposed to a simply national one. This would be especially true if the Euro was introduced into Britain, it would make transferring funds very easy for companies and it would also reduce the effects of the exchange rate mechanism, as there would be a fixed rate between European countries in the "Euro zone." Of course there would be the normal benefits that a company gains from being larger such as economies of scale. However if companies become too large there may be a certain amount of monopoly power gained and this could result in less choice for the consumer.Throughout the history of the European union there has been an increasing number of countries joining. When the idea of European countries working together was first conceived in 1950 there were only six member states, Britain did not join until 1973 and the latest countries to join were Austria Finland and Sweden in 1995. There is a planned wave of several southern and east European countries to join in a few years time. Of course there are several parties that do not believe that these nations are suitable to join the EU. Although these countries do add to the population and the Gross income of EU states the countries that are hoping to join are not as economically stable as the countries that are currently involved. Countries such as Poland and other former members of the Communist block are likely to require aid from the EU as opposed to actually donating it. They could be described as a drain on the resources. This is a description of the regional nature of Europe. All of the nations in Europe have different levels of GNP, growth, inflation and unemployment, and these levels are changing all the time. Every country's government has different ideas regarding policy in a whole manner of areas such as economics and politics. Is it possible to integrate these nations into Europe while maintaining a balance of policies that are suitable for all of the nations involved? It appears that this would be difficult especially if the slightly less developed economies of the Eastern Europe are welcomed into the EU. The differences in the economies of the nations in Europe will cause problems during the period of monetary union. The single currency means that things such as interest rates have to be centralised and set Europe-wide. A country that is in a slump may require lower interest rates, in order to stimulate demand. A country with an over heating economy may wish to curb spending by raising interest rates. A compromise may be reached, but this is unlikely to suit all governments.There are also regional differences in other aspects of the nations economies. Unemployment rates and...

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