Maastricht Treaty Is Ratified (Chronology of European History)
Article abstract: The Maastricht Treaty is ratified, establishing the criteria for a monetary union that is generally regarded as the ultimate step in a European Union.
Summary of Event
The Maastricht Treaty on European Union, signed by member states in Maastricht, the Netherlands, on February 7, 1992, and effective November 1, 1993, brought Europe closer to economic and political union. The Maastricht accord was only the latest in a series of agreements on European community dating to 1944. The European Union traces its first roots back to the Benelux customs union. In 1947, the Organization of European Economic Cooperation was formed to help apportion Marshall Plan aid from the United States. From the beginning, a primary rationale for greater European integration was to create a united front against potential aggression from the Soviet bloc.
A French statesman, Jean Monnet, believed alliance between France and Germany might sustain the postwar peace. Monnet was also a functionalist and a pragmatist, who believed that tighter integration of European economies was dictated by the realities of market capitalism. In 1950, Robert Schuman, French minister of foreign affairs, authored the “Schuman Plan” which called for economic cooperation between Germany and France and shared ownership in iron, coal, and steel production. The Schuman Declaration would provide the basis for the six-nation European Coal and...
(The entire section is 1429 words.)
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