The European Community (EC) or the European Union (EU) is the collective designation of the following three European organizations that have common membership:
1. The European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC)
2. The European Economic Community (EEC) and
3. The European Atomic Energy Community (EAEC).
Currently the European Community comprises of 15 nations - Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and United Kingdom.
Historical Development of EC: The genesis of the idea of European Community can be traced back to the post second world war years when after the great hole cost, the European nations felt concerned about their shattered economies and collective security. Leading European statesmen expressed it openly that a United Europe was the only way for tackling the economic and defense problems of the European nations. Sir Winston Churchill the British Prime Minister on March 5, 1946 suggested that the safety of the world requires a new unity in Europe from which no nation should be permanently outcast. Surely we should work with a conscious purpose for a grand unification of Europe within the structure of the United Nations. Later on Chancellor Adenauer of West Germany too pointed out that economic unity offered the most solid and resistant basis of political unity. The emergence of Soviet Union as a super power and the mounting danger of territorial expansion of USSR threatened the European democracies. It was under these circumstances that George Marshall, Secretary of State of US in June 1947 propounded the Marshall plan which aimed at saving western Europe from the growing influence of communism, by givi...
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...ry Union is the other cherished goal of the EU. Amidst unseen fears of losing sovereignty and haunted by peculiar apprehensions the European nations are progressing gradually but surely towards their target.
In a nutshell: (http://www.ecd.org.cn/ecd-china/comm.htm)
The European Commission, assisted by a European civil service, is the EU policy engine and manages most of the EU common policies. It proposes legislation, and ensures that the provisions of the EU treaties and the decisions of the institutions are properly implemented. It has investigative powers, and can take legal action against persons, companies, or member states that violate EU rules. It manages the budget and represents the Union in international trade negotiations.1
1. Retrieved from the World Wide Web on August 01, 2001
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