British Policy Towards EU Integration

Topics: Europe, European Union, United Kingdom Pages: 3 (1058 words) Published: December 14, 2010
British policy towards EU integration

”Therefore, there is no straight choice about whether Britain’s political future is to be ’European’ or otherwise. This reflects not just the domestic complexity and combustibility of the debate about European integration, but also a profound sense of ambiguity about what the European Union is now and what it might yet become” (Colin Hay 2002). This quote describes Britain’s position and views towards the European Union very well in order to start my discussion about their political role towards European integration. In this essay I will start by looking into how history has its influence on the given subject and what needs to be done to convince the public that the EU is a necessary institution to be a part of. Furthermore I would like to look at the issue of the EMU which I see as a key part of the European integration.

Historical aspects
Britain has in parts of the historical aspect had a hegemonic role in the world and even playing a dominant part in the European economy (post Napoleonic wars) as Rosamond argues Britain played a great part in the economic order that was laid down in the nineteenth century displacing various versions of national political economy (Hay 2002, Rosamond). When Britain also felt that being one of the main reasons that the allies won the Second World War, it shows how they see themselves on top of the world hierarchy. Having this in mind and the fact that ‘British politicians and officials never had any intention of joining the nascent moves towards a European union in the 1950s’ (Not Playing Their Games, The Economist 2010), it seems that Britain is only in the EU only of necessity and not of their own will. I know that this could be an overstatement, but when looking into some of the texts read before writing this essay I have stumbled upon multiple arguments of why Britain had to join the EC/EU and this is somehow concerning. How does this then affect the British policy towards EU...
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