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4 Brief history of the Economic Monetary Union EMU The Economic Monetary Union EMU was formed after a long history of attempts at political integration within Western Europe What began merely as idea in the 1950s has finally become a reality in the current decade The process of integration initially started with the establishment of the Treaty of Rome signed in 1957 which gave rise to the European Common Market also known as the European Economic Community In 1971 the European Community Council sanctioned a three-stage plan for the achievement of an economic and monetary union to be achieved by 1980 However after a few years that plan was abandoned In 1979 European Monetary System EMS was implemented The scope of the European Monetary System was to set up a zone of monetary stability in Europe The EMS was also seen as a clear step towards economic and monetary union During the next couple of years the European Economic Community expanded from its initial size of six countries to twelve leading to an even greater interest in creating currency stability The UK Denmark and Irish Republic joined at the beginning of 1973 Greece in1981 and Portugal and Spain in 1986 In the same year The Single European Act was signed an act that was crucial in the process of integration calling for the removal of all internal barriers to trade capital movements and labour migration within Europe Subsequently in 1989 the President of the European Commission Jacques Delores enforced the need for implementation stating a single market requires a single currency Later the Delores Committee again proposed a three-stage transition to a single currency and set out in detail the conditions to be met in order to establish an economic and monetary union The Maastricht Treaty signed at the end of 1992 set up the timetable for this process At that point the European Union
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