The Background to Institutional Reform
As has already been noted in the introduction to this work, the holding of next year’s Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) is a result of a Treaty commitment, made by the EU Member States, to examine the workings of the Treaty on European Union (popularly known as the Maastricht Treaty) in 1996. At this conference, it is just possible that these countries will decide (as Germany had orginally hoped) that it is as yet too early to reach valid conclusions on the workings of the Treaty. To the author, this would indeed be the most reasonable outcome. Unfortunately, recent events and the almost inevitable enlargement of the Community (which will extend membership not only to relatively small countries like Cyprus and Malta, but also to a number of countries of Central and Eastern Europe) will make financial and institutional reforms a matter of absolute necessity. It will, for example, be imperative to do something about voting in the Council of Ministers as well as changing the numbers of commissioners. Equally, reforms in the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and the financing of the Cohesion, Regional and Social Funds are indispensible before any Central and Eastern European countries are admitted into the Community as Member States.
KeywordsCommon Agricultural Policy Surveillance Body Maastricht Treaty National Sovereignty National Parliament
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