The European Union is the general name for the product of the cooperation made by the EC treaty. For the past fifty years the EU has gone through rapid development towards growth and cooperation.
The European Union formed initially after the Second World War’s aftermath to prevent member countries from going to war with each other and to increase economic stability throughout the region. The Union’s first step was to foster economic cooperation, opening up trade and borders and reasoning that member countries that traded with one another would become interdependent, therefore becoming less likely to feud with each other.
Six countries were the founders of the EU, originally calling themselves the EEC (European Economic Community). The original six founding EEC countries were France, Italy, Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium, and the Netherlands. These first six united countries opened the way for the subsequent countries that have become members.
1993 saw the name change from the EEC to the European Union. The EU has 28 member countries that span across most the European continent. After the European Union was established, it opened up the trading and borders between member countries. Key to smoothing trade among the member nations was the adoption of a single currency, the Euro. The simple rule the EU follows is that all decisions are decided upon by treaties, voluntarily and democratically agreed on by all member countries. The dissolution of borders within the member countries has created a way to travel freely throughout most of the continent. It has also made it easier for member citizens to live and work anywhere in Europe.
It is also of great importance to the EU to promote human rights internally and externally. The basic core values of the EU are seen as the respect for human rights, including an individual’s right to dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, and the rule of law. What began as a purely economic union has evolved into a larger organisation spanning most governmental policy areas. The members of the European Union have delivered over a century of peace, stability, communication, and prosperity as well as, delivering a raise in the standard of living.
Benefits for Turkey should they join the EU?
So, how would Turkey benefit from European Union membership? The benefits of joining the European Union are various. There is the economic benefit that is associated with the increased stability of the united democratic system and safety of the member countries. The EU provides member countries with economic stability by creating the free transfer of goods and services. So, Turkey would most likely gain more favourable trade pathways as a member than they might as an independent nation.
In addition, because the EU is a collective, a member nation with an acute economic crisis can rely on the collective, often avoiding catastrophic economic collapse due to the resources available coupled with the collective stability of the Union.
Becoming a member country also allows member nations to access to EU collective funds that are available to help in improving the new member country’s economy as well as the country’s overall standard of living. This allows the member country to use EU funds to rebuild impoverished areas and to raise the quality of living for local residents.
There are also social benefits, primarily in the ability of Turkey’s citizens to move freely throughout Europe without travel visas or other documentation that member nation citizens don’t require. All member country EU citizens have the freedom to live, work, study, and travel in any other EU country. The EU creates many jobs and financial opportunities allowing access to look for employment in any other member country.
Greater equality and social inclusion has been of great importance to all EU member countries. The European Union has worked towards raising the standard of equality for citizens. Citizens are protected from employment discrimination based on gender, sexual orientation, religion, disability and age because of the directives set in place by the EU and supported by its members.
There are also many environmental benefits to joining the European Union in the constant research and upgrading of energy efficient materials and machinery that is shared by the members. Also, European Union members consistently work to reduce and eliminate pollution throughout all of Europe and the world.
The main reason the EU formed is because of peace after what was seen after the Second World War. Through the use of practical achievements and the created sense of common progress between member states, the EU has been able to achieve their main directives. The EU continues to push forward and expanding across the European continent so that they may give all their member countries all the same benefits to create a better unified nation.
So, Turkish citizens would be able to travel, explore, study and work throughout Europe, often sending a portion of their earnings back to their Turkish family members. Turkish farmers, manufacturers and suppliers would gain open access to the European marketplace. The reverse is also true as citizens from other nations could freely live, work and play in Turkey. The influx of new friends would most likely produce lower prices on consumer goods while increasing values in an already sizzling real estate market.
Turkey would also distance itself from its proximity to problem neighbours including Lebanon and Syria by firmly committing to the EU as its foundation. Should problems in nearby nations spill into Turkey, its European neighbours are ready and willing to defend the country against non-member insurgence.
If you were going to summarise all of these benefits into a single thought, it would be that Turkey would, to the outside world, finally come of age as a progressive nation. Although there are still a few barriers that are holding up Turkey’s acceptance into the European Union, it is clear that Turkey is committed to membership and aware of the benefits that membership in the European Union offers to all Turkish citizens.
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