Questions tagged [european-union]

For questions on the European Union, a union of currently twenty-eight European countries, and how it relates to national governments and other international organs.

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110
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13answers
25k views

What are the main reasons for why negotiating a proper Brexit deal has been so hard?

When the UK voted for Brexit, then it was generally expected that the pro-Brexit politicians had some idea of how negotiations for a Brexit deal would fare and what the outcome would be. Now years ...
77
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11answers
22k views

If “more guns less crime”, how do gun advocates explain that the EU has less crime than the US?

As a naive European, I thought that the self-defense argument for guns in the US was mostly based on the high number of guns already in the country. In other words, I thought that the argument takes ...
71
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4answers
20k views

Could the UK re-join EU after leaving?

Let's assume that Article 50 is invoked and UK officially leaves EU For some reason, both UK populace (a large share) and enough powers that be or popular will in EU, decide that UK ought to re-join ...
65
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8answers
13k views

Can the UK realistically back out of Brexit?

Note: this is not a question about whether Brexit is a good or bad thing. Keep answers impartial please. It is quite obvious that the current British government negotiating Brexit terms has a very ...
63
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6answers
15k views

Why is privacy a subject felt more in Europe rather than the US?

Almost regularly there is news on this or that US (internet) company that must adapt its practices for European customers, since they tend to be too lax with regards to privacy protection according to ...
60
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5answers
12k views

What options are left, if Britain cannot decide?

To my understanding, the lawful government of the United Kingdom has decided, following due process, that: The United Kingdom shall leave the European Union at a set date (currently 29 Mar 2019) The ...
56
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8answers
17k views

Why is it impossible to leave the Single Market without a hard Irish border?

I see a repeated assumption that puzzles me. From another well asked and answered question: On one hand it is impossible for the UK to leave the Single Market while maintaining an open border with ...
52
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7answers
11k views

What are the reasons for the rise in Euroscepticism over the last few years?

Eurosceptic political parties in Europe have been on the rise over the last few years. What are the reasons for this? What are the main arguments made by Eurosceptics against the EU?
52
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4answers
11k views

Is there an EU law that prevents repair of electrical devices?

I know there's a lot of discussion at the moment of the EU introducing new "right to repair" regulations to try to reduce waste. I was recently told that this is effectively a reversal of existing ...
51
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2answers
12k views

Would the USA be eligible to join the European Union?

This question is motivated by the interesting answers given in a similar question on Russia. Let's imagine the USA leaders would want to join the European Union, would they be eligible? There are two ...
50
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8answers
17k views

Why does the EU not seem to pursue technological independence?

Why does the European Union not seem to pursue technological independence? While I am just a naïve citizen without deep insight, it seems to me that many technologies that seem critical to both our ...
50
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9answers
13k views

What would the United Kingdom's “optimal” Brexit deal look like?

As far as I could tell, the Brexit issue boils down to three core points for the UK: The UK no longer has to follow any EU regulations. The border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland ...
50
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4answers
13k views

Why is May in charge of Brexit negotiations? What happened to the prominent Brexiteers?

I don't follow UK politics much, but I did get interested during the Brexit referendum two years ago. Back then, the main names I recall are David Cameron, Boris Johnson, and Nigel Farage, and maybe ...
50
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1answer
11k views

Will English be dropped as an official/working language of the EU after Brexit?

English is currently one of the 24 official languages of the European Union (EU), and one of the three “working” languages alongside French and German. Will the United Kingdom leaving the EU (Brexit) ...
47
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10answers
14k views

Why was the Brexit referendum conducted as a simple majority vote?

For votes which can have extremely long-term consequences, (like changing the constitution) a simple majority vote is usually not enough. Such voting and referendums are not about electing a temporary ...
43
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8answers
8k views

Why did the EU agree to delay the Brexit deadline?

Pretty much the title. My attempts to search Google only brings in swathes or news items about extension, but no explanation of why it might be so, at least none that I can find. Attempt to make UK ...
43
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6answers
9k views

Must the UK leave the EU?

The BBC has projected that a majority voted for the UK to leave the EU. To what extent is the referendum binding?
42
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6answers
11k views

Why are the Brexit trade talks held up by the divorce talks?

In order to provide certainty for businesses and bureacrats, to a layman it appears practical for Britain to carry out trade talks with the European Union in parallel with the divorce talks. Yet the ...
42
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7answers
10k views

Why is participating in the European Parliamentary elections used as a threat?

As the Brexit deadline approaches, I've seen reporting recently over the British government using participation in the European Parliament elections as a threat to convince MPs to not force the ...
40
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4answers
5k views

How did the European Union reach the figure of 3% as a maximum allowed deficit?

According to Wikipedia's article about Stability and Growth Pact: The fiscal discipline is ensured by the SGP by requiring each Member State, to implement a fiscal policy aiming for the country ...
38
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9answers
12k views

Why is the EU concerned about the UK “unilaterally withdrawing” from a proposed Irish backstop?

As I understand, one of the sticking points in the Brexit negotiations has been Britain's level of obligation to a proposed customs union backstop. I understand also that this is essentially a ...
38
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8answers
13k views

Why doesn't the EU now just force the UK to choose between referendum and no-deal?

Since May has proven unable to get a deal through, there are now two alternatives left: no-deal, or an article 50 extension (which would then lead to further deals being put on the table, or possibly ...
38
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7answers
9k views

Why would Putin or Russia benefit from a weak EU or weak EU countries?

Various (western) commentators and politicians state that "the only one happy with/benefiting from [insert bad scenario here] is Putin/Russia" (I'm not sure which one(s) of the two they mean). ...
35
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7answers
11k views

What are the key factors for the rise of nationalism in Europe?

In the past decade there has been a constant rise of nationalism in European politics, with nationalist parties gaining popularity in almost every member of the European Union. The canonical example ...
34
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5answers
16k views

How are GDPR fines actually enforced for US companies with no physical presence in the EU?

GDPR is a hot topic since it will start being enforced from 25 May 2018. One of the most important characteristics of this regulation is that it also applies to companies outside the EU: A major ...
34
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2answers
8k views

Can a state be forced to leave the European Union?

Lets assume that some EU member states think that a certain other member state should no longer be a member of the EU. In contrary to this question, that state has no intention to withdraw from the EU ...
33
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5answers
11k views

If the eurozone budget deficit limit is 3%, why is the European Commission telling Italy it must revise its 2.4% deficit budget?

The BBC reports that the European Commission has told Italy to revise its budget, saying that the draft presents particularly serious non-compliance with Eurozone rules. Yet the maximum permitted ...
33
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9answers
20k views

Why does the EU keep Turkey out?

Turkey has applied for membership in the EU several times, but unlike Greece, it has never been admitted. What are the reasons that the EU has given for denying membership to this large and ...
33
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3answers
8k views

Can European countries bypass the EU and make their own individual trade deal with the U.S.?

Can European countries bypass the EU and make their own individual trade deal with the U.S.? I am asking, because for instance Italy decided to join the Belt and Road before other countries meaning ...
33
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2answers
5k views

What does European Union “freedom of movement” mean, and how much can individual countries restrict intra-EU immigration?

In recent years, France has embarked on a controversial program of expelling Roma people. The controversy is partly about the allegation that France expels people based on ethnic rather than legal ...
32
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3answers
7k views

What issue does the EU take with the UK's Chequers proposal?

It's said that the UK's Chequers proposal is "dead in the water". Different questions here have dealt with UK politicians supporting or opposing the proposal, but I'm interested in the EU's ...
32
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3answers
7k views

After Brexit, can the UK deal with individual countries of the EU?

After Brexit, would the UK be able to do trade deals with individual countries such as Germany, France, etc. without these deals having to be sanctioned by the European Union?
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1answer
7k views

Why does Poland receive more in gross and (far more in) net EU funding than any other member state?

Poland receives more gross and significantly more net EU funding than any other member state, including significantly more than other Eastern members (e.g. Romania or Bulgaria). The stark disparity ...
32
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7answers
3k views

Why and since when did Russia stop integrating itself into the Western community?

After the downfall of the Soviet Union, the Russian Federation was on its way to integrating itself into the Western community politically, economically and socially (by Western World I mean the so-...
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11answers
23k views

If the UK government did not follow through with Brexit what would happen?

The United Kingdom European Union membership referendum (23rd June 2016) resulted in a vote in favour of the UK leaving the European Union. To give effect to the referendum result, i.e. to leave the ...
30
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4answers
4k views

What is the strongest case that can be made in favour of the UK regaining some control over fishing policy after Brexit?

I am a little baffled by the prominence of fishing in the debates over the UK's decision to leave the EU. The fact that the UK may regain control over fishing policy has had high visibility. However, ...
30
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8answers
3k views

Could the British government un-trigger Article 50?

At some point, probably early in 2017, the British Prime Minster is likely to trigger Article 50. A number of expert commentators and a large proportion of the British public still believe that it is ...
30
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5answers
6k views

Could the UK unilaterally “restart the clock” on Brexit?

Assume that: The UK withdraws its Article 50 notice (or purports to do so) as the ECJ says it can. The UK waits for whatever length of time is politically expedient. Optionally, the UK holds a "...
28
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7answers
6k views

No deal Brexit : How is it going to help UK to create new trade deals?

There is a lot of optimism that leaving EU's Single Market, will be an opportunity for UK to create new trade deals with other countries outside the EU. I have seen articles and people using this ...
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4answers
4k views

Why does Russia try to stop Ukraine from approaching to the EU

Which disadvantages does Russia fear?
26
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5answers
3k views

Why do other countries in the EU care so strongly that the UK accepts free movement of people?

It is often reported in the press that the UK will not be able to arrange a new trade deal with the EU without accepting the free movement of labor. Why is this the case: What do other countries gain ...
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6answers
9k views

Why doesn't Russia join the European Union?

Why doesn't Russia join the EU? If they become one of them, then they would not be enemies anymore, right? They have already joined the G-20. Then, they could also join EU, right?
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5answers
3k views

What would Norway have lost if they had joined the EU?

A referendum on joining the European Union was held in Norway on 27 and 28 November 1994. But, the "No campaign" won the referendum. One of the reason was that, Norway has an economy based on ...
25
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2answers
6k views

Is French Guiana a (hard) EU border?

In the context of Brexit, there has been much discussion that the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland would mark the boundary of the EU. This has had large ramifications due to the length and ...
24
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3answers
1k views

What will Scotland's status in the EU be, assuming the Scots vote for independence?

The Scots will vote on whether Scotland should be an independent country or not, on September 18, 2014. Assuming the majority vote is for independence, will Scotland remain in the European Union ...
24
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3answers
6k views

What plans do European countries have if Russia closed gas pipelines to them?

Now that Crimean crisis is at its peak, US and EU are trying their best to force Moscow to pull back from Crimea. But all there efforts seem to have no effect on Russia. But if these situations ...
24
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2answers
3k views

Would European Parliament members from the UK get to vote on the final Brexit deal?

Presuming that a deal is negotiated between the UK and the EU, there would most likely have to be a vote in the European Parliament to confirm it. Given that UK MPs would continue to serve in their ...
23
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3answers
5k views

Why have the states of Greece and Macedonia failed to solve the naming dispute after so many years?

The Macedonia naming dispute has been going on for decades, with severe political and economic consequences for both countries. But it seems that a solution like naming the country e.g. "Northern ...
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4answers
4k views

Why is the European Parliament still pursuing copyright law despite its implementation issues?

According to this article, the European Parliament is considering rolling out taxation of news aggregators: (..) large European newspaper publishers have dreamed of charging news aggregators such ...
22
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9answers
6k views

Why did the UK not have any post-EU exit deals agreed prior to June 2016?

Britain held a referendum on EU membership in 2016, Leave won, some other stuff happened, there was and is load of a drama and the UK is possible maybe who knows perhaps due to leave in March of next ...