European Union Essay

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Benefits of European Union The European Union is a political and economic union of 28 countries. Originally formed in 1958 by six countries (then the EEC), the EU has expanded in terms of size and integration. The aim of the EU is to promote European harmony through creating a single market, enabling the free movement of goods, services and people. Some of the benefits of the European Union include: Broad political and legal benefits European harmony - European Union countries are no longer at loggerheads like they were in the past. With the exception of civil war in Yugoslavia (which wasn't in the EU at the time), Europe has managed to heal the divisions which were so painfully exposed in the two World Wars in the Twentieth Century. The EU was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2012 for helping to promote peace and international co-operation. Many Eastern European countries are keen to join the EU because they feel it will help promote economic and political stability. Legal and human rights. The EU has a strong commitment to human rights, preventing discrimination and the due process of law. This makes the EU attractive to countries, such as the Ukraine who wish to share in similar legal and human rights. Prospect of membership has helped modernise countries, such as Turkey. The Copenhagen Criteria for EU membership enshrine commitment to human rights, rule of law and market economy. The prospect of gaining membership of the EU, encourage countries to implement human rights legislation. Economic benefits EU is one of strongest economic areas in the world. With 500 million people, it has 7.3% of the world's population, but accounts for 23% of nominal global GDP. Free trade and removal of non-tariff barriers have helped reduce costs and prices for consumers. Increased trade to the EU creates jobs and higher income. Over 52% of UK exports are to the EU.

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