Saturday, June 19, 2004

A summary of the agreement

"A difficult, dry technocratic document". That, once again is an offering from Tim Franks, the BBC’s Brussels correspondent. No one would disagree with him. The issues dealt with in yesterday’s summit certainly confirm that assessment, underlining the mind-numbing, technocratic nature of the enterprise. Here are the heads:

 The European Commission
 Definition of qualified majority voting
 Draft Decision relating to implementation of Article I-24
 European Parliament seats
 Provisions specific to Member States whose currency is the euro
 Coordination of Economic Policy
 Declaration on the Stability and Growth Pact
 Measures relating to excessive deficits
 Multiannual Financial Framework
 Explanations relating to the Charter of Fundamental Rights
 Provisions specific to Member States whose currency is the euro
 Eurojust
 Enhanced Cooperation
 Economic, Social and Territorial Cohesion
 Transport
 Energy
 Authentic texts and translations
 Protocol on the position of the United Kingdom and Ireland on policies in respect of border controls asylum and immigration, judicial cooperation in civil matters and on police cooperation Declaration by Member States

Those who expect a full-blown constitution document will be disappointed. This is not yet available and it will be some days, or even weeks, before the amendments have been integrated and the text approved.

In this context, it would be helpful if people stopped referring to Blair and the other "EU leaders" as having "signed" the constitution. They haven't for precisely the reason indicated above. The summit merely agreed the final round of amendments.

Signing will be a grand ceremonial affair, scheduled for some time later this year. With the hubris for which they have become famous, the "EU leaders" will probably elect Rome for the location.

In the meantime, our analyses are posted immediately under this Blog, and will be added-to throughout the day. When complete, we will attempt to integrate them into a single document.

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