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A Stranger in EuropeBritain and the EU from Thatcher to Blair$
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Stephen Wall

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199284559

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199284559.001.0001

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European Union or European Unity? The Campaign for the Single Market

European Union or European Unity? The Campaign for the Single Market

Chapter:
(p.41) 3 European Union or European Unity? The Campaign for the Single Market
Source:
A Stranger in Europe
Author(s):

Stephen Wall

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199284559.003.0003

Britain was not just in the European Community (EC) for what it could get, but had a real vision for the future, especially about the Single Market. A draft treaty on European union was proposed in February 1984. Often referred as the Spinelli Treaty, it created political pressure, which led the EC Heads of Government to set up a special committee to study the EC's future development, including institutional development. Three European issues were preoccupying the government: what stance to take on the pressure from others to call an intergovernmental conference to negotiate treaty change; how to tackle the pressures for moves towards something called the European Union; and the implications of the forthcoming enlargement to include Spain and Portugal. The search for minimal, acceptable treaty change, avoiding risky isolation for Britain and the possibility of Britain's partners seeking to make progress without Britain, were the focal points for the next six months.

Keywords:   Single Market, Spinelli Treaty, Margaret Thatcher, European Union, Geoffrey Howe, Britain, international relations, foreign policy, European Community

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