Within this essay key actors in the making of business policy in the European Union (E.U) will be brought to light. Specific motives and duties of each actor will be clearly defined and how each individual actor affects business policy within the E.U. Internal governing bodies as well as pressure groups and other actors will be elaborated on with their own influences in the making of a business policy.
The European Union is an economical and political amalgamation of 27 countries located primarily in the European continent (see appendix i for all members). These 27 member states have relinquished part of their sovereignty to European institutions and these institutions or ‘governing bodies’ are those that set the direction for the whole E.U. The E.U has delivered half a century of peace, stability and prosper according to some governing bodies however this feeling is not universal. The EU is based on the rule of law, this means that everything that it does is founded on treaties, voluntarily and democratically agreed by all member countries; an example of this is the ‘Treaty of Lisbon’. These binding agreements set out the EU's goals in its many areas of activity
There are four main European Union governing bodies and these are responsible for the majority of the activities in the E.U. The bodies are listed below:
1. European Commission
2. European Council
3. European Parliament
4. European Court of Justice
1. European Commission
The European Commission, established in 1958, is the ‘executive body’ of the E.U. The Commission is primarily based in Brussels at the Berlaymont building however many other operations occur around Brussels and Luxemburg with many meetings taking place in Strasbourg. The main responsibilities of the Commission are proposing legislations, implementing decisions, upholding the union's treaties and day to day running of the E.U. The Commission is run as a ‘cabinet government’ whereby one member of each country from the E.U represents the country rather than a whole government representing their home country. At present Jose Manuel Durao Barroso is the president of the Commission. The Commission was set up as a supranational authority detached from governments and is the only body ‘paid to think European’. The Commissioners from each member state are to act individually therefore neutral to other influences such as governments. This is dissimilar to the European Council which represents governments and the European Parliament who represents citizens. The European Council and the Commission both hold the power to control the whole European Union amongst them however the governmental powers of the Commission have such that Guy Verhofstadt, the Belgian Prime Minister, suggested to changing the name from Commission to 'Government' due to the authority it holds. Out of all governing bodies for the E.U, only the commission has legislative initiative therefore when business policy making occurs most 'influencers' approach the Commission and the Council and Parliament can only request legislations of which the Commission accepts or declines. The Commission has started to lose position to countries like the U.K, Germany and France and these look to sideline the role of Barroso and his presidential status. In late 2012, Jose Barroso addressed the E.U Parliament in Strasbourg to evolve the E.U into a ‘federation of nation states’ because this change is necessary to combat the continent’s economic crisis which was affecting all E.U businesses (i). Barroso touched on the dilemma for Greece and stated that if they stuck by the commitments then they would also be able to stay in the euro zone. Hereafter this comment was made; Barroso also said that countries in the euro zone should not rely on bailouts from the European Central Bank.
The Commission is motivated to improving...