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Chapter

5. The Single Market  

From Stagnation to Renewal?

Alasdair R. Young

This chapter examines the renewal of the single European market (SEM) as a major turning point in European policy-making. It presents the argument that many of the analyses that proliferated in response to the Single European Act (SEA) and the SEM overstated their novelty and understated some of the surrounding factors that helped to induce their ‘success’. The chapter first provides a historical background on how the single market was established before discussing the politics of policy-making in the SEM. It explains how new ideas about market regulation permeated the European Union policy process and facilitated legislative activism and important changes in the policy-implementing processes, culminating in the ‘1992 programme’ to make the single market a reality. Although the task of ‘completing’ the single market remains unfinished, the chapter shows that it has moved to the heart of European integration and altered the pattern of state–market relations in Europe.

Chapter

5. The Single Market  

Central to Brexit

Alasdair R. Young

This chapter examines the renewal of the single European market (SEM) as a major turning point in European policy-making. It presents the argument that many of the analyses that proliferated in response to the Single European Act (SEA) and the SEM overstated their novelty and understated some of the surrounding factors that helped to induce their ‘success’. The chapter first provides a historical background on how the single market was established before discussing the politics of policy-making in the SEM. It explains how new ideas about market regulation permeated the European Union policy process and facilitated legislative activism and important changes in the policy-implementing processes, culminating in the ‘1992 programme’ to make the single market a reality. Although the task of ‘completing’ the single market remains unfinished, the chapter shows that it has moved to the heart of European integration and altered the pattern of state–market relations in Europe. As a consequence, the single market has played a central role in the Brexit process. The Brexit process has also revealed how far the single market has developed.

Chapter

13. A Special Case  

The United Kingdom and the European Union

Desmond Dinan

This chapter examines the United Kingdom's troubled relationship with the movement for European integration and with the European Union more generally. Citing speeches made by leading British politicians over the last seventy years, including Winston Churchill, Harold Macmillan, Margaret Thatcher, and David Cameron, the chapter outlines four distinct stages of British association with the EU: a period of detachment in the early years; involvement in a lengthy accession process and renegotiation of membership terms; engagement in effort to reform the budget and launch the single market programme; and growing disillusionment as the EU strengthened along supranational lines and extended its policy remit, notably by embracing the economic and monetary union (EMU). These periods cover a range of important developments, such as the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), the European Economic Community (EEC), the EMU, and the Single European Act.

Chapter

The focus of this chapter is the emergence of the European Communities in the 1950s, their evolution in the three decades thereafter, and the establishment and early development of the European Union (EU) in the 1990s. The chapter explores key developments in the first four decades of European integration and some of the tensions that have shaped them. It considers the ambitions of the architects and supporters of the European Communities and how their hopes and aspirations played out as integration became a reality in the 1950s and 1960s. It looks at how their ambitions grew and how the process then lost momentum in the 1970s before the idea of ‘European union’ was rekindled in the 1980s with the Single European Act (1986) and the Single Market project. These acted as catalysts for a new era of dynamic European integration with the now expanded Communities at its core. The chapter then explores how, through ‘Maastricht’ and the adoption and implementation of the Treaty on European Union (1992), the European Union was established. The chapter assesses the unique and incomplete form of the new ‘union’ and examines the impact on it of reforms introduced by the Treaty of Amsterdam (1997) and the Treaty of Nice (2000) as the EU sought to prepare itself for the further enlargement and the challenges of the initial years of the twenty-first century.

Chapter

This chapter examines the evolution of the European Union’s (EU) environmental policy. The environment is a relatively new policy area of the EU. It was not officially created until 1973 and acquired a sound legal basis in the Treaties only with the passage of the Single European Act (SEA) in 1987. When the EU was established, environmental issues were low on the political agenda. However, they have become increasingly important at both national and European levels, and there is now a comprehensive environmental policy at the EU level and the EU has developed a reputation as an environmental leader in international environmental diplomacy, especially on climate change. The chapter first explains the main drivers for the development of the EU’s environmental policy, before discussing recent developments, and some of the major issues of current concern. It concludes by evaluating the theoretical leverage of the key integration theories for explaining and critiquing this policy sector.

Chapter

This chapter examines the revival of European integration from the mid-1970s to the late 1980s. It first considers leadership changes in the European Commission before turning to the European Council and the European Monetary System (EMS), the Commission’s southern enlargements, and the British budget rebate. It then discusses leadership changes in the Commission from 1981 to 1982, the Single European Act (SEA), and the European Council meeting at Fontainebleau in June 1984. It also looks at the initiatives of various Commission presidents such as Roy Jenkins, Gaston Thorn, and Jacques Delors. Finally, it describes the implementation of the SEA, widely seen as the big breakthrough in the revival of European integration.