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MULTI-SPEED EUROPE or TWO-SPEED EUROPE (called also "variable geometry Europe" or " Core Europe " depending on the form it would take in practice) is the idea that different parts of the European Union should integrate at different levels and pace depending on the political situation in each individual country. Indeed, multi-speed Europe is currently a reality, with only a subset of EU countries being members of the eurozone and of the Schengen area
Schengen area
. Like other forms of DIFFERENTIATED INTEGRATION such as à LA CARTE and VARIABLE GEOMETRY, "multi-speed Europe" arguably aims to salvage the "widening and deepening of the European Union" in the face of political opposition .

CONTENTS

* 1 Reasons and actuality of the concept * 2 Overview of non-uniformity inside the EU * 3 Participation of European countries in non EU-only integration initiatives * 4 Post-Brexit-vote revival of "multispeed Europe" ideas * 5 See also * 6 References * 7 External links

REASONS AND ACTUALITY OF THE CONCEPT

The concept entered political discourse when, after the end of the Cold War, an eastward enlargement of the European Union
European Union
began to materialise and the question arose how "widening" could be made compatible with "deepening", i.e., how the imminent enlargement process could be prevented from diluting the idea of an "ever closer union among the peoples of Europe", as the Treaty establishing the European Economic Community
European Economic Community
of 1957 had put it. In 1994 – still at a time of the EU12 – the German Christian Democrats Wolfgang Schäuble and Karl Lamers published a document in which they called for a Kerneuropa (= core Europe). This idea envisaged that "core Europe" would have a "centripetal effect", a magnetic attraction for the rest of Europe. A precursor to that concept had been a proposal by two advisors to German Chancellor Helmut Kohl
Helmut Kohl
, Michael Mertes and Norbert J. Prill, published as early as July 1989. Mertes and Prill called for a CONCENTRIC CIRCLES EUROPE, built around a federal core consisting of the EU6 and like-minded EU member states. In 1994 they partly revoked their original idea, arguing that the post-Cold War EU would rather look like a "Europe of Olympic rings" than a "Europe of concentric circles".

The MULTI-SPEED EUROPE concept has been debated for years in European political circles, as a way to solve some institutional issues. The concept is that the more members there are in the Union, the more difficult it becomes to reach consensus on various topics, and the less likely it is that all would advance at the same pace in various fields. Inner Six and Outer Seven.

Intermediate forms could be limited to some areas of close cooperation, as some historical examples are given below. It is also possible now for a minimum of nine EU member states to use enhanced co-operation , but this new framework has been used only once. A second proposal, a unified European patent, is nearing completion with only two countries ( Italy
Italy
and Spain) not participating.

The idea of a multi-speed Europe has been revived because of the following initiatives:

* the Euro
Euro
with 19 EU member-states and one more in ERM II . All but two states ( Denmark
Denmark
, United Kingdom
United Kingdom
) have agreed by treaty to join but at least one of those treaty signatories ( Sweden
Sweden
) has made no further steps to do so. * the Schengen area
Schengen area
Treaty leading to a common border for many EU states (it currently excludes Bulgaria
Bulgaria
, Croatia
Croatia
, Cyprus
Cyprus
, Ireland , Romania
Romania
and the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
) but which includes four non-EU members - Norway
Norway
, Switzerland
Switzerland
, Iceland
Iceland
and Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein
. It is often asserted that Ireland only reluctantly agreed to stay out of the treaty to avoid creating a physical border between the Republic and Northern Ireland because the UK had refused to sign. * other initiatives limited to some states, such as the European Defence initiative and Prüm Convention .

Furthermore, important events were

* the enlargement of the European Union
European Union
to 28 member-states and in the forthcoming years other candidates ( Turkey
Turkey
, Montenegro
Montenegro
, Macedonia , Serbia
Serbia
and Iceland
Iceland
) where new members initially don't join the Schengen area
Schengen area
and the Eurozone
Eurozone
for some time. * the European Convention that led to the European Constitution that was signed in 2004 by the 25 Heads of State, but was not ratified by all national parliaments or assemblies and so failed. Later most of its provisions were adopted through the Treaty of Lisbon
Treaty of Lisbon
that included additional opt-outs for some states.

* differences of view between EU members on some foreign diplomatic and military issues. A clickable Euler diagram
Euler diagram
showing the relationships between various multinational European organisations and agreements.

* v * t * e

The Economist
The Economist
in a 2004 article compared the variances of Europe to a lake that has many deep parts (areas in which countries are similar) and many shallow parts (areas in which countries have major differences).

Currently in the EU there are the following cases of non-uniform application of the European Union
European Union
law :

permanent deviations request by states to cooperate more than EU (post-accession : request to participate at EU level instead of less) request by states to cooperate less than general EU level

allowed by the EU ENHANCED CO-OPERATION OPT-OUTS IN THE EUROPEAN UNION Minor EU law derogations or exemptions special territories status

not allowed by the EU MECHANISM FOR COOPERATION AND VERIFICATION EUROZONE /SCHENGEN SUSPENSIONS (post accession: benchmarks for adoption of EU level)

OVERVIEW OF NON-UNIFORMITY INSIDE THE EU

PARTICIPANT SCHENGEN AFSJ CFR EURO EEA ESM EFC SRM EURO+ CSDP PRüM PATENT DIVORCE SYMBOLS

Austria
Austria
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Belgium
Belgium
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Bulgaria
Bulgaria
c c x c x o x c x x x x x x

Croatia
Croatia
c x x c c o o c o x o o o o

Cyprus
Cyprus
c x x x x x x x x x o x o x

Czech Republic
Czech Republic
x x x c x o o c o x o x o o

Denmark
Denmark
x o x o x o x c x o o x o o

Estonia
Estonia
x x x x x x x x x x x x x o

Finland
Finland
x x x x x x x x x x x x o o

France
France
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Germany
Germany
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Greece
Greece
x x x x x x x x x x c x x x

Hungary
Hungary
x x x c x o x x o x x x x x

Ireland o o x x x x x x x x o x o o

Italy
Italy
x x x x x x x x x x c x x x

Latvia
Latvia
x x x x x x x x x x o x x o

Lithuania
Lithuania
x x x x x x x x x x o x x x

Luxembourg
Luxembourg
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Malta
Malta
x x x x x x x x x x o x x x

Netherlands
Netherlands
x x x x x x x x x x x x o o

Poland
Poland
x x o c x o x c x x o x o o

Portugal
Portugal
x x x x x x x x x x c x x x

Romania
Romania
c c x c x o x x x x x x x x

Slovakia
Slovakia
x x x x x x x x x x x x o x

Slovenia
Slovenia
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Spain
Spain
x x x x x x x x x x x o x x

Sweden
Sweden
x x x c x o x o o x c x o o

United Kingdom
United Kingdom
o o o o x o o o o x o x o o

PARTICIPANT SCHENGEN AFSJ CFR EURO EEA ESM EFC SRM EURO+ CSDP PRüM PATENT DIVORCE SYMBOLS

x – member c – conditions to be fulfilled before joining or candidate o – non-member

Pol. : politics — Soc. : society — Eco. : economy

PARTICIPATION OF EUROPEAN COUNTRIES IN NON EU-ONLY INTEGRATION INITIATIVES

For integration activities not initiated by the EU see European integration European Union
European Union
European Economic Area Schengen Area
Schengen Area
Eurozone
Eurozone

A number of countries have special relations to the European Union implementing most of its regulations. Prominently there are Norway, Iceland, Switzerland
Switzerland
and Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein
which are the only remaining EFTA members while all other former EFTA members have converted into EU members. Through agreements Norway, Iceland
Iceland
and Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein
(not including Switzerland) are members of the European Economic Area since 1994. As a consequence of taking part in the EU single market they need to adopt part of the Law of the European Union
European Union
. Formally they would not need to fund the EU government but in practice they have opted to take on their part of financing EU institutions as required by EU law (see EEA and Norway
Norway
Grants ) with the financial footprint of Norway
Norway
being equal to that of an EU member since 2009. Especially Norway
Norway
and Iceland
Iceland
are known to forfeit EU membership on the basis of EU fishery regulations that they want to opt out on. Both Norway
Norway
and Iceland
Iceland
have signed and implemented the Schengen zone agreements. During the turmoils of the financial crisis Iceland
Iceland
was looking into membership of the Eurozone
Eurozone
and it did formally apply to EU membership in 2009. Norway
Norway
has joined all EU political treaties and it has applied to EU membership multiple times but while fulfilling the requirements the government was vetoed by public vote in their own country in 1972 and 1994. This leaves Norway
Norway
to be integrated into Inner Europe's institutions while not being part their governing body.

PARTICIPANT SCHENGEN EURO CU EEA ENERGY COMMUNITY ECT ECAA EEAGENCY EMCDDA EMSA EASA ERA EDA ESA NATO
NATO

Albania
Albania

x x x

x

Andorra
Andorra

s x

Armenia
Armenia

Austria
Austria
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan

Belarus
Belarus

Belgium
Belgium
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina

x

x x x

Bulgaria
Bulgaria
c c x x x x x x x x x x x

x

Croatia
Croatia
c c x c x x x x x x x x x

x

Cyprus
Cyprus
c x x x x x x x x x x x x

Czech Republic
Czech Republic
x c x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Denmark
Denmark
x

x x x x x x x x x x

x x

Estonia
Estonia
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Finland
Finland
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

France
France
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Georgia

x

s

Germany
Germany
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Greece
Greece
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Hungary
Hungary
x c x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Iceland
Iceland

x

x x x x x x x x

x

Ireland

x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Italy
Italy
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan

Kosovo
Kosovo

x

x x x

Latvia
Latvia
x x x x x x x x x x x x x

x

Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein
x

x

x x x

x

Lithuania
Lithuania
x x x x x x x x x x x x x

x

Luxembourg
Luxembourg
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Macedonia

x x x

Malta
Malta
x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Moldova
Moldova

x x s

Monaco
Monaco
s s x

s

Montenegro
Montenegro

x x x

Netherlands
Netherlands
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Norway
Norway
x

x

x x x x x

x x

Poland
Poland
x c x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Portugal
Portugal
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Romania
Romania
c c x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Russia
Russia

San Marino
San Marino

s x

s

Serbia
Serbia

x x x

Slovakia
Slovakia
x x x x x x x x x x x x x

x

Slovenia
Slovenia
x x x x x x x x x x x x x

x

Spain
Spain
x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Sweden
Sweden
x c x x x x x x x x x x x x

Switzerland
Switzerland
x

x x

x x

x

Turkey
Turkey

x

x x

x

x

Ukraine
Ukraine

x x

United Kingdom
United Kingdom

x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Vatican City
Vatican City

s

PARTICIPANT SCHENGEN EURO CU EEA ENERGY COMMUNITY ECT ECAA EEAGENCY EMCDDA EMSA EASA ERA EDA ESA

Multispeed European Union
European Union
2013: EU countries integrated in all areas (blue) EU countries with exceptions (green) and non-EU countries integrated in the Single Market and Schengen (green-yellow)

– member of the E.U. – official candidate to join the E.U. – recognised potential candidate to join the E.U. x – member c – conditions to be fulfilled before joining s – unilateral adoption/participation through another state who is a member/some instruments signed, but not yet ratified

POST-BREXIT-VOTE REVIVAL OF "MULTISPEED EUROPE" IDEAS

In March 2017, European Commission
European Commission
president Jean-Claude Juncker released a five-point view of possible courses the EC and its to-be-27 post- Brexit members, looking forward to the year 2025. The points, among which Juncker expressed no preference, "range from standing down from policing of government financing of companies, for example, to a broader pullback that would essentially strip the EU back to being merely a single market", per one report. The updated possibilities would entail different member countries or groups of countries adopting different levels of participation with the union. The EC was approaching a March meeting of the 27 members in Rome and Juncker's paper addressed the options that "once invited scorn from convinced Europhiles " and seemed maybe even to have some backing "of lifelong federalists " like the president.

SEE ALSO

* European integration
European integration
* Federal Europe * Pro-Europeanism * Euroscepticism * Enhanced co-operation * Opt-outs in the European Union
European Union
* Schengen Agreement
Schengen Agreement
* Eurozone
Eurozone
* Inner Six * European Free Trade Association (EFTA) * Agencies of the European Union
European Union
– different examples of non-EU states participation and non-participation of some EU members * Mechanism for Cooperation and Verification

REFERENCES

* ^ Marcin Zaborowski: Germany
Germany
and EU Enlargement: From Rapprochement to "Reaproachment"? In: Helene Sjursen (Ed.), Enlargement in perspective, ARENA Report February 2005, p. 46. * ^ Karl Lamers / Wolfgang Schäuble: Überlegungen zur europäischen Politik (Reflections on European Policy). See also Gilles Andréani: What future for federalism?, Centre for European Reform Essays, September 2002, ISBN 1-901229-33-5 , p. 7-8. * ^ Michael Mertes / Norbert J. Prill: Der verhängnisvolle Irrtum eines Entweder-Oder. Eine Vision für Europa, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 19 July 1989. * ^ Michael Mertes / Norbert J. Prill: Es wächst zusammen, was zusammengehören will. “Maastricht Zwei” muss die Europäische Union flexibel machen, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 9 December 1994, p. 11. * ^ "Countries press ahead with limited single EU patent plan", out-law.com, 17 December 2010. * ^ Parliament of the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
(12 March 1998). "Volume: 587, Part: 120 (12 Mar 1998: Column 391, Baroness Williams of Crosby)". House of Lords
House of Lords
Hansard
Hansard
. Retrieved 2007-10-13. * ^ \'Coalitions for the willing\', The Economist, February 1, 2007. * ^ In addition to the permanent deviations there are temporary transition periods for the application of certain EU law provisions in some member states, but these have an already set dates for lapsing. * ^ Signed but not in force. * ^ A B De facto uses the euro. * ^ Valentine Pop, "Once Scorned, ‘Multispeed Europe’ Is Back" (subscription), Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal
, March 1, 2017. Retrieved 2017-03-01.

EXTERNAL LINKS

* Official EU glossary: