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European Union...

What is the EU?

The European Union (EU) is a family of democratic European countries working to improve the lives of its citizens and create a better world.

While differences of opinion and occasional crises among Member States are in the news, far from the cameras, the EU is a remarkable success story. In just half a century, the EU has ensured peace and prosperity in Europe, created the single European currency (the Euro), created an unlimited 'single market' in which capital, services and goods move freely.

At the same time, the EU has become both a major trading power and a world leader in areas such as environmental protection and development aid. It is therefore not surprising that the European Union has expanded from six to twenty-eight countries and many more are in line for membership.



The European Union owes its success to its extraordinary work.


The European Union is unusual because it is neither a federation like the United States nor a cooperative organization between governments similar to the United Nations. The European Union is indeed unique. The Member States that make up the EU remain independent, sovereign nations but pool their sovereignty to gain power and influence in the world that they could not have individually.  


To bring together sovereignties, in practice, to take decisions on matters of common interest democratically at European level,  means transferring some of their decision-making powers to the partner institutions they have created together.


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