Behind the Myth of European Union: Prospects for Cohesion by Ash Amin, John Tomaney

By Ash Amin, John Tomaney

The imaginative and prescient of the unique arhitects of the eu neighborhood used to be to create a Europe of monetary prosperity and social concord. monetary integration has come ever nearer, yet sustained development and a discount in social disparities visible as distant as ever. This publication examines the customers for the true team spirit in Europe and locate that, faraway from promroting it, the various Community's present rules are divisive. The neo-liberal philosophy in the meanwhile is generating rules which favour really filthy rich areas and significant firms on the fee of much less favoured areas and peoples.

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In addition to the problem of weak enforcement of European Social Policy, it has to be recognized that the goal of social cohesion has been less urgent than the goal of raising efficiency and competitiveness. The project of European integration, especially as it was reinvigorated during the 1980s, has been essentially an economic project and one which has strengthened the hands of multinational capital. At each stage of the integration process, concern with developing a European Social Union has been at best secondary rather than central.

The challenge of cohesion 27 The potential regional geography of this development is complex. In some senses, the development of informatics and advanced transport systems potentially liberates the remote areas of the EU from the tyranny of distance by bringing them closer to the markets of Europe, thus allowing development of their productive forces as transport and communications disadvantages are eliminated. Indeed, the principle of infrastructural upgrading as a key condition of regional development is firmly enshrined in current EC regional policy as well as in technology initiatives which are orientated towards the less favoured regions, with their increasing emphasis on developing advanced telecommunications networks (Grimes 1992).

G. in the European Parliament) for some form of ‘fiscal federalism’ which would serve to create a revenue base, allowing automatic revenue transfers to those most in need, the Council of Ministers steadfastly opposes such proposals, for fear of losing control over national welfare programmes. The problem of social fragmentation and social exclusion, thus, though recognized as a problem, continues to remain a major threat to the cohesion of the EU. Hollowing out, neo-liberalism and the nation state A final ‘structural’ change likely to affect cohesion in Europe relates to the reach of the nation state.

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