NEW DELHI: The European Union (EU) is a multinational organisation of 27 European countries, formed with the objective of promoting common economic, social, and security policies.
Originally limited to Western Europe, the EU has undergone a significant expansion into central and eastern Europe in the early 21st century. The EU’s member states include Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden.
However, in 2020, the United Kingdom, which had been a founding member of the EU, withdrew from the organization.
Maastricht Treaty 1993
The Maastricht Treaty, which came into effect on November 1, 1993, established the EU with the aim of strengthening European political and economic integration. The treaty paved the way for the introduction of a single currency, the euro, as well as a unified foreign and security policy, common citizenship rights, and enhanced cooperation in areas such as immigration, asylum, and judicial affairs.
The EU’s efforts to promote peace and democracy in Europe were recognized in 2012 when it was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace. This was a significant achievement for the organization, which has worked tirelessly towards maintaining stability and prosperity in the region.
Today, the EU is one of the world’s largest economies and is a major player in international politics. The organization has been successful in promoting the interests of its member states, as well as advancing the cause of European unity and cooperation.