Europe

The European Union (EU) is a politico-economic union of 28 member states that are located in Europe.The EU operates through a system of supranational institutions and intergovernmental negotiated decisions by the member states.
The European Union institutions are:

  • The European Commission   (TheCouncil of the European Union)
  • The European Council   ( TheCourt of Justice of the European Union)
  • The European Central Bank   ( TheCourt of Auditors )
  • The European Parliament.

The European Parliament is elected every five years by EU citizens.
The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and the European Economic Community (EEC), formed by the Inner Six countries in 1951 and 1958, respectively.

In the intervening years, the community and its successors have grown in size by the accession of new member states and in power by the addition of policy areas to its remit. The Maastricht Treaty established the European Union under its current name in 1993 and introduced the European Citizenship.

The latest major amendment to the constitutional basis of the EU, the Treaty of Lisbon, came into force in 2009.
The EU has developed a single market through a standardized system of laws that apply in all member states. Within the Schengen Area, passport controls have been abolished.

EU policies aim to ensure the free movement of people, goods, services, and capital, enact legislation in justice and home affairs, and maintain common policies on trade,agriculture, fisheries, and regional development. The monetary union was established in 1999 and came into full force in 2002. It is currently composed of 19 member states that use the euro as their legal tender. Through the Common Foreign and Security Policy.

The EU has developed a role in external relations and defense. The union maintains permanent diplomatic missions throughout the world and represents itself at the United Nations, the WTO, the G8, and the G-20.

With a combined population of over 500 million inhabitants,or 7.3% of the world population. The EU in 2012 generated a nominal gross domestic product (GDP) of 16.584 trillion US dollars, constituting approximately 23% of global nominal GDP and 20% when measured in terms of purchasing power parity.
If it were a country, the EU would come first in nominal GDP and second in GDP (PPP) in the world.

According the Human Development Index 26 out of 28 EU countries have a very high score according United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Founder States

1952 Member states and date of entering Belgium, France, Germany, Germany
1973 United Kingdom, Ireland, Denmark, Italy, Luxemburg, Netherlands
1981 Greece
1986 Portugal, Spain
1995 Finland, Sweden, Austria
2004 Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania
Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia,
2007 Bulgaria, Romania
2013 Croatia

Latest EU membership Candidates;Albania, Iceland,Montenegro, Serbia,Macedonia, Turkey
Potential EU candidates;Bosnia and Herzegovina,Kosovo.

European Commission president – Jean-Claude Juncker

The EU motto

“United in diversity”, the motto of the European Union, first came into use in 2000.
It signifies how Europeans have come together, in the form of the EU, to work for peace and prosperity, while at the same time being enriched by the continents many different cultures, traditions and languages.
The motto in all official EU languages
•    Bulgarian: Единство в многообразието
•    Croatian: Ujedinjeni u različitosti
•    Czech: Jednotná v rozmanitosti
•    Danish: Forenetimangfoldighed
•    Dutch: In verscheidenheidverenigd
•    English: United in diversity
•    Estonian: Ühinenudmitmekesisuses
•    Finnish: Moninaisuudessaanyhtenäinen
•    French: Uniedans la diversité
•    German: In Vielfaltgeeint
•    Greek: Ενωμένοιστην πολυμορφία
•    Hungarian: Egység a sokféleségben
•    Irish: Aontaithe san éagsúlacht
•    Italian: Unitinelladiversità
•    Latvian: Vienotidaudzveidībā
•    Lithuanian: Suvienijusiįvairovę
•    Maltese: Magħquda fid-diversità
•    Polish: Zjednoczeni w różnorodności
•    Portuguese: Unidadenadiversidade
•    Romanian: Unitateîndiversitate
•    Slovak: Zjednotení v rozmanitosti
•    Slovene: Združeni v različnosti
•    Spanish: Unidaen la diversidad
•    Swedish: Förenadeimångfalden