Points of Clarity | How Will a Larger EU Community Change the Union’s Character?
Integrating numerous countries into the EU poses a significant challenge, echoing past expansions. The EU must evolve institutionally, address funding, and redefine representation for a more robust and inclusive future.
How will a larger EU community change the Union’s character?
The transcript has been lightly edited for clarity.
For the EU itself this is a huge job to integrate so many countries. It's not done anything like it since it brought in the nations of Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the dissolution of the Soviet Union. That changed Europe, but in ways that in a sense made it dominated by the Western European countries that they were still in control and in command in a sense. Some of the smaller countries felt for a number of years that they weren't really able to participate as fully as they might, and that is now all changed. It really is a meeting of countries of equal weight in the context of the EU.
But going forward, lots of things will have to change. Institutions will have to accept that they need to develop so that they can take in a huge number of countries again. They will need to think about the funding packages, everything from the Common Agricultural Policy to how they designate funds when there are times of crisis. And of course how many MEPs in the European Parliament.
So by the end of this long process everything will be different. But what I believe we will have is a much stronger Europe, and Europe is able to guarantee the future for the people who live within it.
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