Monitor The Strategic Trends
The European Union has steadily moved forward in its attempt to unite Europe politically and economically. It has succeeded in creating a European parliament, a court and, in the near future, a common currency.
January 1, 1999, marked the beginning of the European Monetary Union (EMU) with 11 member countries locking the value of their currency, called the Euro, which actually appeared in 2002. The Euro has the potential to become a strong force in the international monetary scene, possibly supplanting the dollar as the world's currency of choice.
Great Britian will not be joining the EMU at the present time. There has been a great distrust of what Britian sees as a German-dominated monetary union. The debate is still raging between conservatives who wish to remain independent of the continent and those in the liberal camps who do not wish to be left behind when Europe becomes a superpower.
One of the more controversial ideas put forward at a recent European summit was a plan for a European income tax to finance the European Union. The proposal was forwarded by the President of the European Parliament, Jose Maria Gil-Robles. In his view, the direct taxtion of the people would more closely involve individual citizens with the European government.
Other issues of concern to the European Union include the admission of new members into the union, which has created a heated debate. Some of hte countries seeking membership are at odds with each other, like Greek Cyprus and Turkey. Settling these membership questions will take time.
[See The Coming World Leader for more on the eventual leader of this ultima te superstate.]
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