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Politics in the European Union

Politics in the European Union (5th edn)

Simon Bulmer, Owen Parker, Ian Bache, Stephen George, and Charlotte Burns
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date: 30 March 2023

p. 37920. Economic and Monetary Unionlocked

p. 37920. Economic and Monetary Unionlocked

  • Simon Bulmer, Simon BulmerProfessor of Politics, University of Sheffield
  • Owen Parker, Owen ParkerLecturer in European Politics, University of Sheffield
  • Ian Bache, Ian BacheProfessor of Politics, University of Sheffield
  • Stephen GeorgeStephen GeorgeEmeritus Professor of Politics, University of Sheffield
  •  and Charlotte BurnsCharlotte BurnsProfessor, University of Sheffield


This chapter examines the various attempts to create the economic and monetary union (EMU), which first became an official objective of the European Community (EC) in 1969 but was achieved only thirty years later. The chapter first provides a historical background on efforts to create the EMU, including long-standing debates between France and West Germany on its design, before discussing the launch of the single currency, the euro, and its subsequent progress up to and including the eurozone crisis in the late 2000s. On the eurozone crisis, it considers both the short-term efforts at crisis management and the long-term reforms that were implemented in an attempt to prevent further crises. Finally, it considers some of the explanations for and critiques of EMU, including critiques of the responses to the eurozone crisis that have been offered by various academic commentators.

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