European Union

European Union

Timeline

1950   Robert Schuman presents his proposal on the creation of an organized Europe, indispensable to the maintenance of peaceful relations. This proposal, known as the "Schuman declaration", is considered by some people to be the beginning of the creation of what is now the European Union.

1990   Re-unification of Germany. The German Democratic Republic ceases to exist and its territory becomes part of the Federal Republic of Germany. East German citizens became part of the ''European Community'', which later became the European Union. Now celebrated as German Unity Day.

1992   The Maastricht Treaty is signed, leading to the creation of the European Union.

1993   EU - riots in Nørrebro, Copenhagen caused by the approval of the four Danish exceptions in the Maastricht Treaty referendum. Police opened fire against civilians for the first time since World War II and injured 11 demonstrators. In total 113 bullets are fired.

1993   The Maastricht Treaty takes effect, formally establishing the European Union.

1994   In a referendum voters in Sweden decide to join the European Union.

1995   The Kingdom of Sweden and the republics of Austria and Finland are admitted into the European Union.

1995   Latvia applies for membership in the European Union.

1996   The Czech Republic applies for membership of the European Union.

1996   The last occurrence of February 24 as a leap day in the European Union and for the Roman Catholic Church.

1996   The European Union's Veterinarian Committee bans the export of British beef and its by-products as a result of mad cow disease (Bovine spongiform encephalopathy).

1998   The European Central Bank is founded in Brussels in order to define and execute the European Union's monetary policy.

1999   The World Trade Organisation rules in favor of the United States in its long-running trade dispute with the European Union over bananas.

2002   Euro banknotes and coins become legal tender in twelve of the European Union's member states.

2002   Enlargement of the European Union: The European Union announces that Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia will become members from May 1, 2004.

2003   The Treaty of Accession is signed in Athens admitting 10 new member states to the European Union.

2003   In a referendum, Estonia approves joining the European Union.

2004   Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia join the European Union, celebrated at the residence of the Irish President in Dublin.

2005   Spain becomes the first country to vote in a referendum on ratification of the proposed Constitution of the European Union, passing it by a substantial margin, but on a low turnout.

2005   Bulgaria and Romania sign accession treaties to join the European Union.

2007   Bulgaria and Romania officially join the European Union. Also, Bulgarian, Romanian, and Irish become official languages of the European Union, joining 20 other official languages.