Talk:Member state of the European Union

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united kingdom flag[edit]

Someone appears to have put the BVI flag where the uk should have its own. Not good with coding so can someone fix it. (talk) 04:17, 14 December 2011 (UTC)


Notwithstanding fn 4 with the list of member states, I am pretty certain that the _kingdom_ of the Netherlands is not a member of the European Union. Only the larger constituent country, the Netherlands, is. (talk) 23:04, 20 May 2008 (UTC)

Old comments[edit]

When I came back from the Canaries in 1996 they were specificly mentioned as not qualifying for EU customes exemption. I took this to mean tht athey were not in the Customs Union. DJ Clayworth 21:42, 15 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Can someone indicates what's about the micro-states as Andorra, Monaco, San Marino and Lichenstein?

Maybe worth mentioning they are not democracies and so not eligible to join

Liechtenstein used to be in a customs union with Switzerland and member of the EFTA, but when they signed the EEA (European economic Area) agreement, (I think in 1995) they have moved closer to the EU, Monaco has strict agreements with France, Isle of Man, Jersey and Guernsey are strictly speaking not in the EU, Canary Islands form a special economic zone, Gibraltar is a special case, EU air traffic regulations are a reason for UK-Spanish tension over Gibraltar, San Marino and Vatican City are somehow regulated by Italy, These cases could be researched by someone for extending this article.

Greenland left the EU at the end of the eighties. The situatation of Faroe Islands and the Aland islands should be checked.

Morocco has applied for EU membership, this was declined.

Morocco's application was declined with the official reason that it is not on the "european continent", but yes this should be mentioned somewhere Alinor 21:44, 5 Dec 2004 (UTC)


What about Iceland? had it attempted to join the EU?

Not to my knowledge. Wombat 11:06, 20 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Mainly due to difficulties with common fisheries policy I think


This is from an article I wrote: "Belarus has not stated publicly that they seek out EU membership, but former Lithuanian Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius state in 2003 that Belarus despretly needs membership in order to "get out of the swamp." [1] Kubilius also said that he hoped that with Lithuania being members of the EU and NATO could help suppply aid to Belarus." Zach (Sound Off) 03:52, 15 September 2005 (UTC)


1.) We should list the "possible candidate states" from the Western Balkans as such.

included them as part of the Stabilisation and Association process that includes provisions for full EU membership. Alinor 08:12, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

2.) We should either list all countries which have signed an Association Agreement with the EU - that is, almost all countries in the European Neighbourhood Policy - or leave Tunisia out of this. Flag of Austria.svg ナイトスタリオン 15:01, 28 November 2005 (UTC)

Agree and acted. Too many countries have AAs with the EU. Only Morocco is left, becouse it has submitted official application.Alinor 08:12, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

(Alphabetical order)[edit]

Why can't this page have a list in alphabetical order? Jon Harald Søby 21:59, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

good question. seems reasonable.
I was thinking the same thing, sometimes you just want to know who they are, not their form of government etc. Have added it. -JLogan 09:18, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Why did someone replace the alphabetical list with another accession list? We already have one, do we need another on the main page? I've put another small alpha list back up along side it as I'm sure someone will just want to see the countries and find one quickly rather than wanting to know when they joined, it seems there is an unhealthy interest in that among some people. -JLogan 09:12, 13 April 2007 (UTC)

Missing footnotes[edit]

Have just left two unfilled lines (immediately below the table) for the "a" and "b" footnotes appearing in the table, but am not sure what they're meant to be; I guess "a" might be to indicate that West Germany is now Germany, but as to "b"...?  Regards, David Kernow (talk) 22:40, 12 April 2007 (UTC)


Hi, great changes all round and its good to see it developed, does look very neat and well planned, particularly the list. However, the map. Now its a good idea to be able to click on the names but surely we could do better than that back image? Surely you didn't create it Ssolbergj? Your stuff always looks fantastic, that map, well come on Moldova is a sea now. Perhaps we could edit it to fix the missing geography and have colours that the a tad, well, nice? Thanks. -JLogan 22:23, 25 April 2007 (UTC)

Ireland on the map should link to Ireland instead of the island. But I don't know how to change this.--Dub8lad1 (talk) 16:36, 15 September 2009 (UTC)

Capital and largest city[edit]

Do we really need the largest city column? There is only one member state where the capital is not also the largest city. — Kpalion(talk) 20:30, 5 May 2007 (UTC)


I think this article could include a section on the EEA and perhaps other close relationships. The fact is the EEA countries are ties to the EU in 1001 ways, obviously in the single market and taking on all that law, but politically as well, participating in the CFSP (battle groups) and programs like Erasmus, and Schengen and so fourth. The fax democracies are essentially members without representation (the polite way) and I think we could do with a section on them. But I'd like to check to see if people think this is within the scope of the article. - J Logan t/c: 21:30, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Does anyone have information about the development of the role of member states? - to give the article a dimention beyond extra members joining. Perhaps something about the decreasing power of them, new bodies representing them such as the European Council and how they deal with each other, such as the empty chair crisis. - J Logan t: 09:30, 26 July 2007 (UTC)
"Decreasing power" sounds a bit POV to me. Could easily be argued that the Reform Treaty negotiations showed just how easy it could be to get a particular agenda across if you wanted. Look at Poland's insistence on an AG and less MEPs for Germany, and Bulgaria's insistence on the Cyrillic (spelling?) writing being recognised as just a couple of examples. I think its best to leave out any discussion on the role of the member states as it would be difficult to describe it accurately. Plus itd be far too contentious. Discussion of the EEA isn't necessary if you ask me, considering there's an EEA page already. Though I could be convinced otherwise on the latter point. --Simonski (talk) 19:24, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

Former featured list candidate[edit]

Is this still a list? - J Logan t: 09:30, 26 July 2007 (UTC)

No, I guess not. - SSJ  17:13, 14 July 2008 (UTC)

Saint Barthélemy and French Saint Martin[edit]

The cited document says that these two are not part of the European Community. Saint Barthélemy however says it is part of the EU and cites a document that refers to the TREATY ON THE FUNCTIONING OF THE EUROPEAN UNION, where Article 355 says "The provisions of the Treaties shall apply to Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Réunion, Saint-Barthélemy, Saint-Martin, the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands" Can these two be part of the EU but not part of the EC? --androl (talk) 21:12, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

According to this information this "Consolidated versions of the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union" will enter into force after ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon. So, Saint-Barthélemy and Saint-Martin are still outside EU. Aotearoa (talk) 19:23, 13 January 2009 (UTC)

But now Lisbon is in force they are definitely part of the EU. Furthermore, I guess the cited was a mistake. I can't really believe that when Saint Martin and Saint Barths left Guadeloupe in 2007 they left the EU as well, only to rejoin on 1 December 2009. Fentener van Vlissingen (talk) 15:17, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

St Barth is no more in UE since January 2012. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:14, 12 October 2012 (UTC)

Northern Cyprus[edit]

Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is special territory. Can you add it to member state of our union please? -- (talk) 19:27, 23 March 2009 (UTC)

No it is not a part of the European Union. A referendum decided this around the time of the Republic of Cyprus's accession.MusicInTheHouse (talk) 19:34, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
So it has to be in excluded list like UN Buffer Zone, isn't it? -- (talk) 19:42, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
No there's nothing special about it, it's a seperate territory controlled by Turkey and like Turkey the territory will never be a member of the EU.MusicInTheHouse (talk) 19:47, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
Or if it is not part of our union why we include all the Cyprus in the maps of EU? However we can execute it like Greenland, in the maps of our union, isn't it? -- (talk) 19:54, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
I'm not citizen of Turkey but citizen of Bulgaria/EU, I don't mind whether Turkey or NC is/will be in EU or not. I'm just trying to indicate that NC is not part of Republic of Cyprus or EU, so it has to be in the excluded list. -- (talk) 19:54, 23 March 2009 (UTC)
"...territory controlled by Turkey" NC has its own democratically elected parliament, so it is not controlled by another country. Before 1974 Cypriot Turks asked help from Turkey to save their lives and Turkey send them help, and they established their own country, that is all. Even Cypriot Turks control Turkey; they say: "we'll do that, give us some money", "we'll say that, come on, you can say it too", "No, we'll not hand shake with the new president of Turkey, he can **** itself."... -- (talk) 20:17, 23 March 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Incorrect date[edit]

Although Treaty of Rome was signed in 1957, it entered into force on 1st January 1958. So for the first six member states the correct date should be the latter. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:20, 16 April 2009 (UTC)

"Official name"[edit]

What is meant by official name? The Name in the language, that is spoken at the country? -- (talk) 21:05, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

Basically the long form, though the home language as well wouldn't hurt if we had space. And for the editors arguing about Ireland right now, we had had this dispute and it is Ireland according to the constitution. Republic of Ireland is not the formal usage, merely a long informal name used by the British to distinguish it from Northern Ireland. Yes it is a republic, but that isn't its name.- J.Logan`t: 17:43, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

I agree that Ireland, plain and simple, was the name given to the country that after independence from the UK became first the Irish Free State in 1922, then evolved to become Ireland. However, until 1949 Ireland remained within the Commonwealth whose head was then the King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; the Irish withdrew from the Commonwealth, thus removing any residual duties of the King, and in doing so declared themselves to be 'The Republic of Ireland'Moonraker55 (talk) 22:42, 4 August 2012 (UTC)

In fact, could we include the home language in a drop down? The [show] button always takes up so much space, anyway to get around that? Ideas? Also, isn't the "common name" for the UK also Great Britain or just Britain? United Kingdom/UK isn't actually used that much outside the UK itself bizarrely. I've always found when learning a foreign language other countries don't use the translation United Kingdom. Granted though, they tend to use England even more but Britain over UK.- J.Logan`t: 17:46, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

Hey guys, think this is worth doing? Not sure how to correct the small font, but any objections to this since the article on the languages was deleted;

Common name
Official name
Area (km²)
Special territories
Austria Bundesadler.svg
Austria 1 January 1995 8,340,924[1] 83,871 Vienna
Great coat of arms of Belgium.svg
Belgium 25 March 1957 10,666,866[2] 30,528 Brussels

'Member State' or 'member state'[edit]

As far as I can see it should be the latter. While they capitalise 'State' and 'Member State' in treaties and so on, I can't see a grammar rule which says we should capitalise here. — Blue-Haired Lawyer 23:07, 15 October 2009 (UTC)

I agree. It's not a proper name, and it doesn't appear to be permitted as an exception by WP:MOS. It's not capitalized in United Nations member states, and "state" is not capitalized in U.S. state. It would appear that the capitalized form is used in EU documents, not just treaties, but Eurospeak is not Wikipedia style.--Boson (talk) 06:11, 16 October 2009 (UTC)
I was unsure about this as well. I recently noticed that there was an inconsistency between the two throughout Wikipedia, but saw 'Member States' used in official documents as if it were an official term. Simply for consistency, I changed 'member states' to the capitalised version in a few articles. Hayden120 (talk) 06:43, 16 October 2009 (UTC)
Sorry about leaving this one hanging. In treaties and official legal documents it is normal and correct to use capitals when referring to States, Contracting States and Member States. However I don't believe this is correct grammar for general use. Since no one has objected I move the article to ""Member state of the European Union". — Blue-Haired Lawyer 17:53, 19 December 2009 (UTC)


Of the Copenhagen criteria this article says: "These basically require that a candidate Member State must enjoy a secular, democratic system of government, together with the corresponding freedoms and institutions, and respect the rule of law".

As far as I know, the Copenhagen criteria make no mention of secularism. On this other hand they mention functioning market economy and coping with competitive and market pressure which do not get a mention here.

Demdem (talk) 19:08, 28 November 2009 (UTC)

I agree that the word secular does not appear in the Copenhagen criteria; which is just as well because if it did then the United Kingdom would not be eligible. The Church of England, whose hereditary Supreme Governor is also the herditary Head of State, currently HM Queen Elizabeth II, is an established church in England (although not in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland). The Church of England continues to have automatic rights to send 26 bishops to sit in the House of Lords (the Upper House of the UK Parliament in Westminster), although only certain bishoprics and the two English Archbishoprics have permanent seats, the others are by rotation. The Synod, the governing body of the Church has to have its decisions ratified by Parliament or by the Privy Council (in certain cases). The Bishops and Archbishops of the church are appointed nominally by the Crown, but the process is dominated by the Government of the day in right of their exercising of the Royal prerogative. There is a complicated slection process by which the church is consulted, and there is an offical appointment committee, but the chair is always the appointment of the Prime Minister. The UK, is therefore not strictly speaking a secular country, since there is no separation of religion and state.Moonraker55 (talk) 22:55, 4 August 2012 (UTC)


Is Switzerland not part of the EU? I really assumed it was. Could anyone confirm/disagree? Strydom21.04 08:11, 10 December 2009 (UTC)

No, see Switzerland and the European Union. --Boson (talk) 07:35, 10 December 2009 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Not moved, superseded by further request below. Ucucha 09:28, 12 January 2010 (UTC)

— "member state" should be lowercase as it is not a proper noun. And it should be in the plural form when we're referring to a list. There is a parallel and rather dead discussion going on at EU:MOS. — Blue-Haired Lawyer 18:30, 19 December 2009 (UTC)

I propose moving this article to Member states of the European Union. Firstly, "state" should not be capitalized. Secondly, the article name should be plural because, like most articles about lists of things, it is about the set of states that are members of the EU, not about the concept of a "member state of the European Union" (like most non-list articles). See Wikipedia:Naming conventions (plurals) --Boson (talk) 21:22, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

This page move is not entirely uncontroversial — these pages have been moved back and forth a few times — and involves deleting redirects, so I'll propose it as above. Boson, I hope you don't mind me adding the second proposed page move, I think it makes sense to discuss them together. — Blue-Haired Lawyer 18:30, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Don't care about caps, but I think singular works best here. it isn't just a list, we're talking about it is the concept and in most cases where we discuss something on Wikipedia, the article name is in singular. I think that is appropriate here.- J.Logan`t: 20:55, 19 December 2009 (UTC)

As above, I think this article should remain titled in the singular as it isn't a list, it's about what being a member state of the EU is. See, for example, U.S. state. Moving for caps seems like a good idea, but I don't have a strong opinion either way. (talk) 22:38, 19 December 2009 (UTC)

I named this article with "Member State" written in uppercase after I noticed the treaties do this consistently. The language used in the treaties seems on the other hand often to be out touch with normal usage; for example the name of the CFSP is written lowercase. But at the same time I suppose it underlines that it's about the EU members.
I've been thinking about the name of this article for a while, and I'm sorry to complicate things, but as this article is mostly about the concept (as opposed to list only), we may rename it Membership of the European Union. The problem with this title is however that it indicates that a list is not included. - SSJ  14:05, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Nice idea SSJ but I think it complicates things in terms of people looking for the article. They'll want to look for articles on the member states while membership is a term not often used. It also helps in quickly writing wikilinks!- J.Logan`t: 18:48, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Yes there's the issue of "member state" (as opposed to "membership") being a word more frequently said, but I think this partly has to do with the Wikipedia bubble. E.g. the phrase "Seek membership" is often used in the media I believe. The most approperiate title in relation to the content of the article should ultimately be the title of the article. Sorry but I don't think [[Member State of the European Union|member state]] is a very quickly written wikilink. "Membership of the European Union" is shorter. People who look for an article on member states would of course be redirected.
I'm not sure what title I prefer. "Membership" is perhaps strictly speaking an insufficient ('organisation-ish') word considering the EU is a political union of member states, not mere members. We should possibly also respect the fact that the formal term as written in the treaties is "Member State". - SSJ  13:31, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
BTW, the Swedish presidency writes "Member States" in this article. - SSJ  12:57, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
While I do realise that many official and other sources capitalise member states, I don't think that's a good enough reason to do so ourselves. Neither do I see any wiki bubble problem. The term is commonly used in the media and academia, and the other options including members, member countries etc... lack official standing. And one thing that I thought that was most commonly agreed over the European Union was that we should talk about the EU in terms commonly used to describe the EU, rather than trying to be inventive. I realise that this stance is somewhat inconsistent but I gather Wikipedia adopts similar guideline toward trade marks. Happy Christmas everyone! — Blue-Haired Lawyer 18:33, 25 December 2009 (UTC)


Ok, it seems like we have five possible names for this article:

  • Member State of the European Union
  • Member States of the European Union
  • Member state of the European Union
  • Member states of the European Union
  • Membership of the European Union

Essentially, the questions we need to answer are 1: capitalise or not, 2: plural form or not, and 3: whether membership is a word that more accurately sums up the article.

1: I don't have a very strong opinion on this issue, the most formal solution would to capitalise, but even writes it in small caps sometimes. 2: I strongly oppose plural form. See WP:PLURAL. This is not a "List of.." article. 3: Membership is a nice and short word that fits the article because for the most part, what the article does is to explain what having membership means. On the other hand, "member state"/"Member State" is a solid term with very high recognition. - SSJ  22:15, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

As regards the plural form, I think this is covered by Wikipedia:PLURAL#Exception: "There are some exceptions to this rule: . . . Articles on groups of specific things, rather than a class of things." The principle purpose of the article is to list the member states (plus potential member states etc.), but this is not the main reason for using the plural: it is an article about a group of states, not about a class of states. The artificiality of the current singular title is illustrated by the first sentence: "A Member State of the European Union is any one of the 27 sovereign states [my emphasis]. Compare this to the article on Semitic languages, which - because it uses the plural - is not forced to start off "A Semitic language is any one of a group of related languages . . .". The use of the indefinite article with a capitalized noun phrase also indicates that something is probably wrong with the article name. --Boson (talk) 23:09, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
I don't think the list of members is that dominant in this article. To a greater extent, giving an ordinary encyclopedic definition of the concept of EU membership seems to be the principle purpose. More than half of the article explains the EU's historical membership, and what having an EU membership means for a country. Thus, the standard, singular form title fits this article perfectly IMO. The content of an article as a whole should decide what the title should be, not whether the lead sentence is formulated in a 'forced' way or not. The way I see it, having a plural form title would give this article the ambivalent state of being a quasi-list. - SSJ  15:30, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
The point is not that the article name should be changed because the first sentence is forced, but that the lead sentence illustrates that the article is really about the group, and is therefore incorrectly named. If there is a need for an article explaining what having EU membership means for a country that article should perhaps indeed be called "Membership of the European Union". In that case we should possibly split the article because we are talking about two different concepts:
  • an article about the group of states that make up the EU (and candidates for inclusion in that group).
  • an article about what membership means to the individual member state.
--Boson (talk) 20:51, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Comment I agree Membership of the European Union would be appropriate for what this topic is actually about with some minor rewriting, but will we not then in due course produce a list of the "Member states" of the EU and have to resolve this point again? or am i missing something?Ajbpearce (talk) 22:11, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Comment I'm agnostic about the style of the article names but I think that, whatever the outcome, we need an article called Membership of the European Union (with a see also Citizenship of the European Union) since these are interesting topics in any case. What are the criteria, which states qualify, what is the procedure, what is the glide path, what are the consequences (link to the four freedoms, the euro, maybe Schengen if only to say it is not consequence, and so on). --Red King (talk) 00:23, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

I think I'm in favour of having this article renamed Membership of the European Union, and thereafter perhaps making it more comprehensive. This solution might also work as a compromise for the discussion on uppercase vs. lowercase and plural vs. singular. I'm against having a separate "List of member states" article for the time being. This article is small enough as it is. - SSJ  03:12, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

Moreover, Merriam-Webster's definition of "Membership" suggests that a list of member states might suite an article called Membership of the European Union:

  1. the state or status of being a member
  2. the body of members ("an organization with a large membership")
  3. the relation between an element of a set or class and the set or class

- SSJ  03:22, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

I agree that "membership" has two meanings but, as I wrote above, it refers to two different concepts (and I mean this in the proper linguistic sense). If there are two different concepts which can share the same name, Wikipedia usually provides some form of disambiguation. That could mean (for instance) having
  1. an article Membership of the European Union (about the first concept; with a hatnote referring to the second article) and
  2. an article Member states of the European Union" (about the second concept; with a hatnote referring to the first article).
--Boson (talk) 22:25, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
IMO, we should have one inclusive article called Membership of the European Union. It might be possible to split the word into several concepts, but this article is small enough as it is. I think the word nicely binds the whole issue together. All disambiguation needed in this case could probably be sufficiently provided by sensible sectioning and explanation. If the article hypothetically became too long one day, then the more 'physical' disambiguation method of creating a separate article called "List of member states of the European Union" might have become smart move, had it not been for the fact that the table of members takes so little space. With some adjustments in font size and line height etc., it might become even smaller than it is today. - SSJ  22:33, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
It is not a matter of "splitting the word into several concepts". This is Wikipedia, not Wiktionary, so it would be a matter of not artificially combining two concepts because the same name can be used to designate both concepts. It is also not a matter of the table of members being to small. The article on member states should (in my opinion) retain all information on the group, including its size, enlargement, etc. and on dates of accession etc. This is most of the article at present. What applies to the individual state (as a class) or about membership as such? There is the statement about the Copenhagen criteria and the section on representation. I suppose one should also include the section on sovereignty, which I think probably belongs somewhere else and needs reviewing (the discussion of sovereignty and withdrawal is misleading; before Lisbon I would have called it incorrect). A separate article about membership as such could probably be expanded quite a bit if it were not mixed up with the facts about the size and composition of the group. However, there are already separate articles that discuss many things that could theoretically be included under Membership of the European Union, e.g. Copenhagen criteria, Withdrawal from the European Union, Enlargement of the European Union, Future enlargement of the European Union, Supremacy (European Union law), Supranational union. --Boson (talk) 23:49, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
I see what you mean, but this combination of concepts is already the status quo of the article. First of all, I'm not in favour of splitting the article in two because I think this combination of concepts is already successfully handled in the article as it is today (the need for disambiguation doesn't always have to lead to the creation of new articles, especially when the existing article is small). Secondly, what you are proposing is not an article move, but essentially a split that would require editing time and energy. I consider that to be a different debate, because I don't think the move which I support, namely "Member State of the European Union"→"Membership of the European Union", would make the duality of this article any more problematic. Therefore I say "one step at a time". And I don't think this first step would worsen the situation. I would probably participate in a potentially long and exciting debate on how to/whether to build up two separate articles, but that is something that can just as well be done after a renaming of the article in its present shape. Ignoring the possibility of splitting the article, would "Member State of the European Union"→"Membership of the European Union" be a step forward or backwards in your opinion? - SSJ  00:36, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
I do think it would be an improvement on the present name, given the contents; so I would not oppose a move to that name (without prejudice to a possible split later). I don't think people would look under that name if they were looking for a list of members, so I do think it would be a good idea to have a redirect from List of members of the European Union, as well as variations on Members of the European Union, Members states of the European Union, etc. --Boson (talk) 11:46, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Requested move 2[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Not moved. No consensus for this move. There does seem to be some feeling that the current title is inappropriate, but no clear consensus for any particular change. I suggest editors continue the path taken above of making sure they know where exactly the disagreements are and looking for common ground. Ucucha 09:30, 12 January 2010 (UTC)

Member State of the European UnionMembership of the European Union — We have discussed this rather extensively in the section above, but among other things, people have been suggesting is that this is an encyclopedic word that could work as a compromise title. — SSJ  13:55, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Support "Membership" is a formal word that IMO binds the whole issue quite nicely together. But most of all, the discussion on "Member State" vs. "Member state" vs. "Member States" vs. "Member states" seems like a maze. Therefore I think this would be an alright compromise. I do like the current title, but as I said, this would be a compromise I'm fine with. - SSJ  14:02, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
Against: per my arguments in the section above.- J.Logan`t: 18:10, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.


KOSOVO is still the part SERBIA and therefore should not be represented on the map along the other sovereign states. Please, modify the map until the further development. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:35, 14 February 2010 (UTC)

Ireland / Éire[edit]

Is not the official name of Ireland Éire? (talk) 11:15, 17 February 2010 (UTC)

No, it is one of two equal and identical names, Éire and Ireland. When writing in Irish (as in, the name Éire is used. When writing in English (as in, the name Ireland is used. For centuries, each has been the direct translation of the other. See WP:Use English and also Constitution of Ireland and Names of the Irish state. --Red King (talk) 15:09, 17 February 2010 (UTC)

Euler diagram[edit]

The Euler diagram of EU members needs correcting. The countries within each section are in alphabetical order: Portugal and Croatia are out of place. Also, the link on Russia is to a redirect. Can somebody please fix these things? I do not know how to. McLerristarr (talk) 01:43, 14 April 2010 (UTC)

It's been fixed. McLerristarr (Mclay1) (talk) 10:23, 18 May 2010 (UTC)


Hey y'all just wanted to let you know Luxembourg does not have the largest GDP in the European Union, might want to add a per capita on that sucker - greetings the fish —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:45, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

The table looks weird. The emblem line is screwed up and the word emblem is split into two lines. Any particular reason for this? McLerristarr (talk) 03:29, 14 April 2010 (UTC)

I don't know if there was any reason, but I fixed it anyway. Thanks, Hayden120 (talk) 03:43, 18 May 2010 (UTC)


The current table is ridiculously large, and messes up the page. Do we really need all that information? The statistics are probably the least necessary parts. Motion to remove? Chipmunkdavis (talk) 05:48, 8 August 2010 (UTC)

It fits the width, no problem with it. The stats provide useful comparison. Lot more than the trivia - if we get rid of anything it should be the capital listings.- J.Logan`t: 09:25, 8 August 2010 (UTC)
Oh wow. It fits on this computer, but not at the one I was on before. I think something needs to go, it's slightly unwieldily. As an alternative, have a first table for just the list of countries alphabetically, and a sortable list below for comparing the different countries of the EU. We could add a new section, comparisons/diversity which would fit that. Chipmunkdavis (talk) 10:21, 8 August 2010 (UTC)
Another table would be rather redundant. It may be your work computer was on a lower resolution - and I don't think we need to bother catering too much to older displays as they are becoming less and less frequent. My display is fairly average and the whole table shows despite the window not filling the whole screen.- J.Logan`t: 10:58, 12 August 2010 (UTC)
I think the size of the table is fine. But if something is to be removed, then IMO that should be GDP, Gini and HDI. The present economic statistics don't define the states as much as the other pieces of information do. And the native names aren't that necessary. The constitutional names, as shown in the English translations of the EU treaties, are the most approperiate IMO, and could even replace the short names (along with the native names) in the table. - SSJ t 13:13, 13 August 2010 (UTC)
GDP, HDI and Gini say a lot about a state's economy, society, lifestyle and so on; both the level of EU states and disparities/similarities between (number of rich vs poor, the extent to which the wealth of a national has contributed to life style and how well spread that is - gives an indicate of the left-right balance of members). If we lose something it should be the capitals, as that says nothing - it is merely trivia, and perhaps the constitutional name.- J.Logan`t: 16:24, 13 August 2010 (UTC)
Furthermore, we should be looking at more data that describes the states - not trivia such as the capital - such as using data from Urbanization by country. Showing which states are urbanised and which are more rural would be helpful. Perhaps also something on manufacturing/exports vs services or primary resources. Maybe put in the freedom house listings of freedom and press freedom.- J.Logan`t: 16:28, 13 August 2010 (UTC)

Requested move 3[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: page moved to Member state of the European Union per discussion below. While there seems to be sufficient support to make "state" lower-case, the singular/plural issue is less clear, and the change to plural does not seem to enjoy consensus approval. - GTBacchus(talk) 07:58, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

Member State of the European UnionMember state of the European Union — Use proper capitalization and use plural as in similar articles.--TopoChecker (talk) 20:36, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

NOTE: proposal changed from target "Member states of the European Union" to target Member state of the European Union, per Boson, Logon, JLogan, TopoChecker. TopoChecker (talk) 17:48, 7 January 2011 (UTC)

Firstly: Use lower case as for the noun "state" in:

  • U.S. state (includes listing and background info)

and as for the word "territories" in:

Secondly: Use plural as in the following articles and as per Wikipedia:PLURAL#Exceptions:

TopoChecker (talk) 20:36, 1 January 2011 (UTC)

I certainly oppose the substitution of 'states' for 'state', with or without a capital. The article is about the status of being a member state. It is not a list of states, though it includes a list. Furthermore, the EU is not a federation so the precedent of the states of the US etc is not a valid one. In addition, there are many articles that say "X is a Member State of the European Union", because this is the natural way to write it. As for the initial caps, I believe (subject to citation) that the European convention is to use State rather than state, to recognise that they are not subordinate but a free association of sovereign nations that have agreed to act collectively in some matters. --Red King (talk) 23:49, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
In addition, this RtM is indistinguishable from RtM number 1, which has been rejected. The proposer introduces no new evidence. --Red King (talk) 23:51, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
"The article is about the status of being a member state." -1) Thanks for supporting normal capitalization. 2) An article like States of Germany also is about being a state of Germany. There is no article
  1. It is not a list of states - same goes for all the other articles.
  2. Furthermore, the EU is not a federation so the precedent of the states of the US etc is not a valid one. - How you come to that conclusion? I mean, you could also say, the EU territory on average is closer to the prime meridian therefore precedent is not valid. Federation or not is irrelevant.
  3. In addition, there are many articles that say "X is a Member State of the European Union", because this is the natural way to write it. - When I recently walked below some trees I have not seen mother nature writing it that way. I do not think it is natural in any respect.
  4. As for the initial caps, I believe (subject to citation)... - Since you provide no citation, I guess you do not believe what you say.
  5. this RtM is indistinguishable from RtM number 1 - Thanks for confirming that it can be distinguished, e.g. by number.
  6. The proposer introduces no new evidence. - I think everybody can see the new evidence.
The only one having singular and upper case is Member State of the European Union. That is inconsistent. TopoChecker (talk) 22:16, 3 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Support move (lowercase and plural) for the reasons given by the nominator. This article (like Languages of the European Union and States of Germany) is about a class of entities, including membership of that class. The plural should be used. There is no reason for the capitalization of "state", which is merely an EU-internal convention used in EU treaties etc.--Boson (talk) 11:42, 6 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Partial Support move to lower case "Member state of the European Union" per normal capitalisation rules. Comment on plurals: even on the proposers examples this article could be singular. The content is quite similar to that of U.S. state. — Blue-Haired Lawyer t 16:20, 6 January 2011 (UTC)
  • Support for capitalisation but opposed to change of state to states. I agree with BHL et al that this deals with more than just a list and there are precedents for using the singular which I think is more fitting. We've had this debate before, people tend to agree on the capitalisation issue so to move this forward rather than just rehash the previous debate can we just proposed to change the capitalisation and nothing else?- J.Logan`t: 22:54, 6 January 2011 (UTC)
I would also support implementing the change to lowercase. The change to plural could then be proposed there. I don't think the use of plurals is especially related to lists; it applies to classes of entities, and that may include a list of current members of the class and/or criteria for membership of the class; but that discussion should not delay implementation of the change to lower case. --Boson (talk) 00:02, 7 January 2011 (UTC)
Same for me. I support both changes independent from each other. TopoChecker (talk) 01:16, 7 January 2011 (UTC)
I'm relaxed about lower case, indeed given policy of course I accept it.--Red King (talk) 18:37, 9 January 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Map Legend?[edit]

The map on this page needs a legend. I see three shades of green on the map. What do they mean? Downstrike (talk) 21:58, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

Languages in table[edit]

Spain has regional languages in the body itself, the UK in a footnote. "recognised regional languages" are also present in other states but not mentioned. Exactly what is the distinction from Alsatian to Welsh to Catalan in terms of the relevance to the table?- J.Logan`t: 08:06, 9 September 2011 (UTC)


I think I'm the victim of my own stupid edit summary. I should have said that giving the long or constitutional name of a country is useful and not uninteresting. For most member states this is just means prepending "Republic of" or "Kingdom of", which isn't very useful unless you count the indication of whether a place is a monarchy or a republic and there's no consistency in this as the long names of Ireland and Romania are "Ireland" and "Romania". In addition to this the long names were given in the language of the country and I suspect "Ελληνική Δημοκρατία" is meaningless to most English speakers. In contrast indicating the capital of a country may well be "child's trivia" but it is somewhat useful. — Blue-Haired Lawyer t 09:13, 9 September 2011 (UTC)

While I can think of some uses, I do agree. Equally though, there are loads of things we could list like capital but given the space we of course have to cut them down. The most useful things in a list of EU member states are things that are comparable. With language and currency you can see which ones cross borders. With GDP, GINI, HDI etc you can see which countries are richer, more equal etc. Population and size are obvious, as is date of accession. Territories are needed to show which parts of a state are outside of the EU. What does capital show though? - J.Logan`t: 16:26, 9 September 2011 (UTC)
But this does have the unfortunate side effect of listing far off islands of EU member state but not their capital cities. — Blue-Haired Lawyer t 22:18, 10 September 2011 (UTC)
Well you need the far off islands because we're talking about membership - are these islands in or out? The capital is a no brainer, it is obviously in.- J.Logan`t: 08:48, 11 September 2011 (UTC)

Update HDI, GDP and Gini[edit]

HDI, GDP and Gini are heavy outdated. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:54, 30 March 2012 (UTC)

Coats of arms[edit]

IMO it's as much a matter of course that national coats of arms should be included in the list. There is a reason why the articles of countries include the arms, and that is because using heraldry as a means to identify states and regions, and differentiate them from one another, is a centuries-old tradition (much older than flags). It's been particularly dominant in Europe. The fact that wikipedia editors for some years have been extremely fond of using the flag template in lists, and haven't had any uniform way to use arms, doesn't mean that it's less meaningful to include arms than flags. I don't agree that arms are meaningless decoration. Besides, Template:Coat of arms includes only escutcheons (i.e. each respective coat of arms's focal "shield", which in in other variants might be part of a comprehensive achievement). This ensures that the arms remain informative even when rendered at low resolutions, as well as a meaningful degree of uniformity. An anonymous user added the Italian state logo, but that's by no means a coat of arms. - SSJ t 22:04, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

I'd sooner have neither flags nor coats of arms in the list, but since we're unlikely to agree to remove both I think the flags are enough. To have both flags and arms pollutes the table with too many icons. Coats of arms are anachronistic. We can afford to lose them. — Blue-Haired Lawyer t 18:10, 30 June 2012 (UTC)
I don't see why flags should be preferred. And I don't agree with the notion that arms are anachronistic. Heraldry would perhaps be out of place for other continents (since the heraldic tradition might not be as strong there as in Europe), but given its centrepiece role of identifying states in Europe, I think coats of arms are entirely justified in this list. Template:Flagicon has of course overshadowed heraldry totally during Wikipedia's 10 years of existence, but I'd rather consider that as a sign that Wikimedia has early on had a wide array of simple SVGs such as flags. That doesn't imply that Europe's thousand year history of using heraldry in this way suddenly has ended. The fact that Europe's newest state, Kosovo, considered it natural to adopt a coat of arms in 2010, proves for example that heraldry still plays an important role. - SSJ t 20:49, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

Notwithstanding the argument for or against the use of armorial bearings, or coats of Arms, the entry for the United Kingdom is not accurate. The UK does not have a coat of Arms per se. Arms are borne in the UK by those individuals or corporate bodies granted them by the Heralds of the Royal College of Heralds. The armorial bearing shown in the table is that of HM Queen Elizabeth II, which happens to be the same as those used by her father, and very similar to both her grandfather and great-grand-father - but they were all granted separately to individual monarchs. The picture is of the shield without supporters; the full armmorial bearing of the British Government is the full armorial bearing of HM The Queen, because under the various settlements between the Crown and Parliament the Government of this constitutional monarchy is carried out in the name of, and on behalf of the Sovereign. However, the Queen has more than one Coat of Arms, the one for use in England and Wales, which is shown on the table, also used in Northern Ireland; then there is a separate one for use in Scotland. So, I would argue that the armorial bearing for the nation state of the United Kingdom simply does not exist and that the wiki-page showing it as the arms of the UK is simply in error.Moonraker55 (talk) 22:30, 4 August 2012 (UTC)

Despite the historical identification of countries by arms, these days they are identified by flags. The UN has flags flying outside its entrance. Embassies hang flags to note their presence. Sports fans take and wear flags to national events. Flags are massively more recognisable to readers than Coats of Arms, and the table is already quite bloated. CMD (talk) 13:11, 1 July 2012 (UTC)
As I've said, other continents generally have a weaker heraldic tradition, thus one would perhaps think It'd be a bit strange if the UN headquarters displayed coats of arms. Though National emblem of France reads: "In 1953, France received a request from the United Nations for a copy of the national coat of arms to be displayed alongside the coats of arms of other member states in its assembly chamber." Embassies do often show coats of arms, and athletes' uniforms often display national coats of arms. Some of the Spanish football supporters at today's final of the 2012 Euro championships had painted the national arms on their faces. Passports and residence permits in the EU display coats of arms, and no flags. All EU treaties are sealed with the arms of member states, not the flags. - SSJ t 16:27, 1 July 2012 (UTC)
I'm not disputing the use and status of arms, but noting they pale in being well recognised when compared to flags. For every spanish supporter with the arms painted on them, there were probably around 100 with the flags. (On a slightly tangential note, if Italy lacks an arm, how does it sign EU treaties?) CMD (talk) 01:35, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
The Spanish flag includes the national arms, so in that case, every single spanish supporter carried the arms. And the Spanish team's shirts display the arms as well. Italy, as the sole EU member without a heraldic symbol, had shirts which showed the national tricolour as a heraldic escutcheon. Italy seals treaties with its national emblem, not its flag. All the new democracies in Eastern Europe made new seals during the 1990s with coats of arms. I would agree that arms could be considered unnecessary decoration if this had been a list of Tour de France winners, bit the table in this article has long been a sort of mini version of the national infoboxes. As such, the arms are an important part of this I think (the arms are quite dominant in country infoboxes), and in this case they occupy much less space than for instance the "gini" colums - a much more esoteric element, which ordinary people certainly know less about. - SSJ t 10:51, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
You're telling me that when they painted red and yellow lines on their faces with a figure on the left, they were doing it to show the arms? They were doing it for the flag. The arms were a side-effect. Also, noone said Italy signed anything with a flag, but if their emblem serves the same purpose as arms, why not include it in the list? I'm happy to remove gini. It's not a mini-infobox; it has information like council votes, EP seats, and territories in and out of the EU. If it was a mini-infobox, that would be highly undue. CMD (talk) 15:17, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
It wasn't meant as very important point. One would perhaps not expect supporters to bother to draw anything more complicated than a tricolour or a simple pattern in their faces, so it doesn't make much sense comparing the number of people with access to yellow and red paint to the number of people who had put sufficient energy into drawing the more intricate arms. At least it was a banal example which goes to show that ordinary people are familiar with their national coat of arms.
Italy's emblem doesn't adhere to heraldic rules, and therefore isn't a coat of arms. An encyclopedia should perhaps consequently not treat it as such.
Well, a mini-infobox with added EU-relevant information then. The European Union is a semi-country, and for that reason editors clearly have thought that country-infobox information such as territory size and population are relevant here. Compare this to e.g. the very limited information in the list of members in the ESA article, an intergovernmental organisation with a very limited scope. Thus one might say that the flags and the arms have an information value per se which exceeds the purpose of getting people to spot each country quickly while scrolling through the list. And I don't think this is undue. It's certainly not meaningless decoration. Text information (list of territories etc.) and numbers can describe countries, but imagery can be information as well. - SSJ t 17:05, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Member states of the European Union[edit]

Of the article links at the page Member state starting "Member states of the..." this is the only one that redirects to singular "Member state of..." . ChemTerm (talk) 03:04, 20 September 2012 (UTC)


Croatia must be add. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:19, 16 April 2013 (UTC)

The article correctly states that Croatia is an acceding country. It will no doubt be added as a member state after 1 July 2013. --Boson (talk) 11:27, 16 April 2013 (UTC)

Wrong coat of arms of Croatia, change it! — Preceding unsigned comment added by Pavlemocilac (talkcontribs) 00:36, 1 July 2013 (UTC)

Simplified arms[edit]

Hi all! Is there any need or justification for simplification of the national arms in the list? IMO that is an outright case of OR, but please correct me if I'm wrong. I trust that elaborate arms would be impossible to figure out at this small size, but the current situation appears to fail MOS regarding WP:PERTINENCE. If the simplified versions are selected just because they look good (or better than actual arms/emblems) they are purely decorative and should not be a part of an encyclopedia.--Tomobe03 (talk) 12:19, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Hi. Please read the template documentation at Template:Coat of arms. - SSJ t 15:19, 8 December 2012 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Member state of the European Union/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: QatarStarsLeague (talk · contribs) 01:45, 24 July 2013 (UTC) Coming soon!
I will neglect the other official languages. QatarStarsLeague (talk) 01:45, 24 July 2013 (UTC)


Before I begin reviewing the present content, I was wondering if you had contemplated adding a History section, detailing the predecessors of the EU, and the Schengen Area's formation. This is not required, but merely proposed.

Lead and infobox[edit]



Pass here.


Pass here.


Each paragraph needs an individual reference, in accordance to the GA criterion.


The excerpt and the two paragraph below it need references.


The initial two paragraphs need references.
I do not see why the Outermost Regions subsection lies within the Opt-outs section. It might be better housed in the Representation section.

Political systems[edit]

"Some of these territories such as French Guiana are part of the EU (see outermost regions, above)..." If you do move the Outermost Regions subsection, this will need to be altered. Also this section needs a reference for each and every paragraph.

Withdrawal and suspension[edit]


Related states[edit]

Pass here.


Once the issues are allayed (mostly adducing), the article will pass. Congratulations! QatarStarsLeague (talk) 16:18, 26 July 2013 (UTC)

Not ready[edit]

It has been well over a month, and none of the issues here have been addressed. Indeed, on August 2, the nominator added eight "fact" templates, and none of the needed citations have been supplied in the month since. This cannot be a Good Article in its current condition, and given the extended inaction, the nomination should be closed. BlueMoonset (talk) 14:10, 2 September 2013 (UTC)

Very well. The nomination is henceforth closed due to inactivity. QatarStarsLeague (talk) 15:37, 8 September 2013 (UTC)


This section may be misleading. I think it would probably be best to present part of the topic in summary form and refer readers to main articles, in particular Supremacy (European Union law). On the other hand, any summary would need to avoid misleading simplifications. Because of the constitutional niceties, this is not an easy task. As it stands, the text is oversimplified and needs changes, rather than just a few references. Even with references, great care must be taken not to misrepresent them, because of the subtleties involved. For instance:

  • "Some national legal systems also explicitly accept the Court of Justice's interpretation, such as France and Italy, however in Poland it does not override the national constitution, which it does in Germany."
    • This may be true in practice, but the German Constitutional Court clearly does not formally accept that the Court of Justice's interpretation overrides the national constitution, though some (who would need to be named) might argue that it does so de facto or "in practice". It might be better to quote the court more directly.
  • As currently worded, the introductory paragraph does not adequately stress the limited nature of the transfer of powers from the member state to the European Union and thus may appear to conflict with the following text and the quoted Article 4 of the Treaty of the European Union. The quotation from the Costa v ENEL judgment also currently omits (without indication) the words "albeit within limited fields".
  • If there is to be a discussion of different states' interpretation of supremacy, it would probably be appropriate to include the UK. It might also be misleading if there is no indication of whether the state concerned has a dualist legal tradition.
  • The way in which Cooper is quoted ('In contrast to other organisations, the EU's style of integration has "become a highly developed system for mutual interference in each other's domestic affairs') appears to endorse one POV. If it stays, it needs to be reworded and attributed in the text as one person's description.
  • "Yet, as sovereignty still originates from the national level, it may be withdrawn by a member state who wishes to leave. Hence, if a law is agreed that is not to the liking of a state, it may withdraw from the EU to avoid it."
    • As currently worded, this whole paragraph seems to be editorial comment. It might be best to remove it completely. At least the views presented need to be attributed.

--Boson (talk) 15:42, 2 August 2013 (UTC)

Italy's Coat of Arms[edit]

The Italian Republic does not have a Coat of Arms, but an Emblem. Anyway I think it is more significant to use the Emblem of the Italian Republic as a symbol of Italy (as it is used on passports, embassies and government's buildings), instead of the Coat of Arms of the Italian Merchant Navy. --Puisato (talk) 17:21, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

The new map[edit]

All of Greece's islands are missing, except for Crete. How comes? Italy, Spain, Britain, they have their islands. But Greece is cut off all of its 1000+ islands. The map is missing alot of Greece's island territory. Can someone fix this? --SilentResident (talk) 01:08, 15 March 2014 (UTC)

Indeed, I can't say I a fan of the new map. It's somewhat jagged around the edges. The use of heraldic shields is antiquated and excluding the outlines of non-member states makes the whole thing look strange. — Blue-Haired Lawyer t 14:20, 15 March 2014 (UTC)

Area Incorrect[edit]

France's area is stated as "674,843" when other sources ( quote "643,801". Perhaps the error was made over the confusion between the area of France's mainland and its area including its overseas regions. (talk) 16:37, 24 March 2014 (UTC)


What about Georgia joining the EU? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2001:5B0:22FF:3CF0:0:0:0:31 (talk) 01:30, 30 November 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ "Bevölkerung zu Quartalsbeginn seit 2002 nach Staatsangehörigkeit und Bundesländern" (in German). Statistik Austria. 2008-04-01. Retrieved 2008-07-30. 
  2. ^ "Structure de la population" (in French). Statistics Belgium. 2007-01-01. Retrieved 2008-07-30.