Treaty of Rome
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|Treaty establishing the European Economic Community|
The Treaty of Rome signing ceremony, at the Palazzo dei Conservatori on Capitoline Hill
|Signed||25 March 1957|
|Location||Capitoline Hill, Rome, Italy|
|Effective||1 January 1958|
|Depositary||Government of Italy|
|Languages||German, French, Italian and Dutch (original version)|
|The Treaty establishing the European Economic Community at Wikisource|
The Treaty of Rome, officially the Treaty establishing the European Economic Community (TEEC), is an international agreement that led to the founding of the European Economic Community (EEC) on 1 January 1958. It was signed on 25 March 1957 by Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and West Germany. The word Economic was deleted from the treaty's name by the Maastricht Treaty in 1993, and the treaty was repackaged as the Treaty on the functioning of the European Union on the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon in 2009.
The TEEC proposed the progressive reduction of customs duties and the establishment of a customs union. It proposed to create a common market of goods, workers, services and capital within the EEC's member states. It also proposed the creation of common transport and agriculture policies and a European social fund. It also established the European Commission.
In 1951, the Treaty of Paris was signed, creating the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC). The Treaty of Paris was an international treaty based on international law, designed to help reconstruct the economies of the European continent, prevent war in Europe and ensure a lasting peace.
The original idea was conceived by Jean Monnet, a senior French civil servant and it was announced by Robert Schuman, the French Foreign Minister, in a declaration on 9 May 1950. The aim was to pool Franco-German coal and steel production, as these two raw materials were the basis of the industry (including war industry) and power of the two countries. The proposed plan was that Franco-German coal and steel production would be placed under a common High Authority within the framework of an organisation that would be open for participation to other European countries. The underlying political objective of the European Coal and Steel Community was to strengthen Franco-German cooperation and banish the possibility of war.
France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands began negotiating the treaty. The Treaty establishing the ECSC was signed in Paris on 18 April 1951 and entered into force on 24 July 1952. The Treaty expired on 23 July 2002, after fifty years, as was foreseen. The common market opened on 10 February 1953 for coal, iron ore and scrap and on 1 May 1953 for steel.
Partly, in the aim of creating a federal Europe two further communities were proposed, again by the French. A European Defence Community (EDC) and a European Political Community (EPC). While the treaty for the latter was being drawn up by the Common Assembly, the ECSC parliamentary chamber, the EDC was rejected by the French Parliament. President Jean Monnet, a leading figure behind the communities, resigned from the High Authority in protest and began work on alternative communities, based on economic integration rather than political integration.
As a result of the energy crises, the Common Assembly proposed extending the powers of the ECSC to cover other sources of energy. However Jean Monnet desired a separate community to cover nuclear power and Louis Armand was put in charge of a study into the prospects of nuclear energy use in Europe. The report concluded further nuclear development was needed to fill the deficit left by the exhaustion of coal deposits and to reduce dependence on oil producers. However the Benelux states and Germany were also keen on creating a general common market, although it was opposed by France due to its protectionism and Jean Monnet thought it too large and difficult a task. In the end, Monnet proposed creating both as separate communities, in an attempt to satisfy all interests. As a result of the Messina Conference of 1955, Paul-Henri Spaak was appointed as chairman of a preparatory committee (Spaak Committee) charged with the preparation of a report on the creation of a common European market.
The Spaak Report drawn up by the Spaak Committee provided the basis for further progress and was accepted at the Venice Conference (29 and 30 May 1956) where the decision was taken to organise an Intergovernmental Conference. The report formed the cornerstone of the Intergovernmental Conference on the Common Market and Euratom at Val Duchesse in 1956.
The outcome of the conference was that new communities would share the Common Assembly (now Parliamentary Assembly) with the ECSC, as it would with the Court of Justice. However they would not share the ECSC's Council of High Authority. The two new High Authorities would be called Commissions, this was due to a reduction in their powers. France was reluctant to agree to more supranational powers, and so the new Commissions would have only basic powers and important decisions would have to be approved by the Council, which now adopted majority voting. The latter body fostered co-operation in the nuclear field, at the time a very popular area, and the EEC was to create a full customs union between members.
The conference led to the signature, on 25 March 1957, of the Treaty establishing the European Economic Community and the Euratom Treaty at the Palazzo dei Conservatori on Capitoline Hill in Rome. In March 2007, the BBC's Today radio programme reported that delays in printing the treaty meant that the document signed by the European leaders as the Treaty of Rome consisted of blank pages between its frontispiece and page for the signatures.
Renamings and amendments
The Treaty of Rome, the original full name of which was the Treaty establishing the European Economic Community has been amended by successive treaties significantly changing its content. The 1992 Treaty of Maastricht established the European Union with the EEC becoming one of its three pillars, the European Community. Hence, the treaty was renamed the Treaty establishing the European Community (TEC).
When the Treaty of Lisbon came into force in 2009 the pillar system was abandoned, and hence the EC ceased to exist as a legal entity separate from the EU. This led to the treaty being amended and renamed as the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU).
In March 2011 the European Council adopted a decision to amend the Treaty by the adding a new paragraph to Article 136. The additional paragraph, which enables the establishment of a financial stability mechanism for the Eurozone, runs as follows:
The Member States whose currency is the euro may establish a stability mechanism to be activated if indispensable to safeguard the stability of the euro area as a whole. The granting of any required financial assistance under the mechanism will be made subject to strict conditionality.
For details of the content of the treaty as it stands after 2009, see Treaties of the European Union#Treaty on the functioning of the European Union.
The 50th anniversary was celebrated in various ways, including events on Europe Day and throughout the year. Numerous commemorative coins were issued, including a special commemorative two euro, which was issued with near identical designs by every (then-13) eurozone member (the first time every member had issued a coin together). Other non-circulation coins included the Belgian 10 euro 50th Anniversary of the Treaty of Rome commemorative coin
- Article 81
- Article 82
- Berlin Declaration (2007)
- Common Agricultural Policy
- Four Freedoms (European Union)
- History of the European Union
- Intergovernmental Conference on the Common Market and Euratom
- Ohlin Report
- Spaak Report
- European Economic Community
- Raymond F. Mikesell, The Lessons of Benelux and the European Coal and Steel Community for the European Economic Community, The American Economic Review, Vol. 48, No. 2, Papers and Proceedings of the Seventieth Annual Meeting of the American Economic Association (May, 1958), pp. 428-441
- 1957-1968 Successes and crises - CVCE (Centre for European Studies)
- The Brussels Report on the General Common Market (abridged, English translation of document commonly called the Spaak Report) - AEI (Archive of European Integration)
- Drafting of the Rome Treaties - CVCE (Centre for European Studies)
- A European Atomic Energy Community - CVCE (Centre for European Studies)
- A European Customs Union - CVCE (Centre for European Studies)
- What really happened when the Treaty of Rome was signed 50 years ago
- EU landmark document was 'blank pages'
- How divided Europe came together
- "Presidency Conclusions Brussels European Council 21/22 June 2007" (PDF). Council of the European Union. 23 June 2007.
- The European Treaty Amendment for the Creation of a Financial Stability Mechanism (Swedish Institute for European Policy Studies)
- Consolidated version of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, Wikisource
- Documents of Treaty of Rome's negotiations are at the Historical Archives of the EU in Florence
- History of the Rome Treaties - CVCE (Centre for European Studies)
- Treaty establishing the European Economic Community - CVCE (Centre for European Studies)
- Happy Birthday EU — Union wide design competition to mark the 50th anniversary of the Treaty
Modified Brussels Treaty
European Council conclusion
Single European Act
|Three pillars of the European Union:|
|European Atomic Energy Community (EURATOM)|
|European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC)||Treaty expired in 2002||European Union (EU)|
|European Economic Community (EEC)|
|Schengen Rules||European Community (EC)|
|TREVI||Justice and Home Affairs (JHA)|
|Police and Judicial Co-operation in Criminal Matters (PJCC)|
|European Political Cooperation (EPC)||Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP)|
|Unconsolidated bodies||Western European Union (WEU)|
|Treaty terminated in 2011|