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The European Union and Expansion

However, the West German economy is stagnant and high-cost, low-risk capitalism had been undermined as a model of development in favor of U.S. and Britain’s neo-liberal economic models of development. However, many of the new EU members view the U.S. as the defender of their fledgling democracies and support for the U.S. in the region has risen. As Germany’s Foreign Ministry’s coordinator of American relations Karsten Voigt maintained, “Any concept attempting to define the EU as an organization that is basically against the United States is no longer able to muster a majority” (Vinocur 2).

The current EU members’ motivation for admitting the new members is hardly one of charity. The stalled motor of the European economy has made current members hope that the expanding economies of the new members will restart the European economic engine. As Reichlin explains, “Although hardly uniform, the economies of all the 10 EU candidates have consistently expanded 15 to 90 percent faster than the current EU has over the past six years. Analysts predict that GDP growth in this accession group will keep outstripping the west by 70% this year and 90% next year” (1). Member nations warned new members at the treaty signing in Athens that unity was important to ward off the looming threat of organized crime and to create a powerful market with strong potential for growth.

The current member nations and U.S. and European companies hope that as the economies and incomes in the new batch of 76 million consumers in the ten new countries grow, so will the demand for goods and services. The combined GDP of the new nations will only add 5% to the current EU GDP, but analysts argue the fate of success will be in the hands of other than the new members, “Ultimately, the fat of eastern Europe is partly in the hands of American and European companies that must decide how—or whether—to knit these countries into their broader regio...

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The European Union and Expansion. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 14:27, August 19, 2017, from
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