Will closer union be EU’s future or downfall?

This month marks the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome – the foundation of what became the EU.
Since 1957 it has led to the passport free zone, a single market and currency, common environmental standards and labour protection and has helped secure peace, but there have been downsides and reforms to strengthen the union may face opposition.
Strasbourg University lecturer in European Politics PHILIPPE JUHEM talks here about the challenges

“When we speak of 60 years of Europe, it gives an impression of a single continuous vision, whereas it was actually thought up bit by bit and not always in exactly the way that was intended,” explains EU politics expert Philippe Juhem.

“At first people didn’t see much difference. It’s only with the creation of the single market in 1993 and the lifting of all the barriers, that what existed as an idea really started having various consequences, depending on people’s economic sectors and social class. Then the single currency arrived and increased the effects of competition.

“Before, countries could deal with it by devaluation, which made it easier to deal with. If a certain sector, or the whole country, became less competitive because of inflation or because of concessions made to workers, they could re-establish competitivity. This was no longer the case, so strategies of lowering prices of products, like Germany ...

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