by Whitney Taylor
However such positive signs in the economy can be halting and are not guaranteed. Ambassador Collins admitted that the EU had experienced failings and significant browbeating from both the media, but also from Member State economies. As the Ambassador to Ireland, Mr. Collins knows all too well the depth of the crisis and that emerging from it will not occur overnight but over the course of many months if not years. Slow, measured growth is ideal and in fact necessary alongside budget cuts if the EU is to reaffirm its strong position in the global economy. Although it has not been swept aside in the least, we cannot disregard the pain that has been felt by businesses, workers and political campaigns. People in the EU have voiced their dissent and the political ranks have both changed in composition and motivation. Prime Minister David Cameron has expressed opposition to initiating deeper integration into the Union in light have what has transpired amongst the banking sector, reigniting debate over the status of the United Kingdom as a full EU Member State. As the EU is moving towards accepting its 28th Member State into the Union, Croatia, the world is watching the movements of how the United Kingdom will proceed and how the EU will enforce membership.
The EU is determined to emerge from the storm a more safe and sound entity, but as it progresses forward, will it do so by maintaining the status quo, giving Member States an à la carte option in order to tailor rules to national economic challenges or as a deeper and more harmonized Union? Only time will tell.
Whitney Taylor is a Master's Candidate in European Union Studies at Illinois where she is also pursuing a graduate minor in Corporate Governance and International Business. Her research interests include monetary policy, corporate social responsibility and trade.
Photo: Word cloud of the text of the transcript of President Barroso's State of the Union address, created using Wordle application