• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

"It was economic issues much more than political ones that kept Britain out of the European Economic Community (EEC) before 1973," How convincing is this explanation?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

"It was economic issues much more than political ones that kept Britain out of the European Economic Community (EEC) before 1973," How convincing is this explanation? The EEC has always been a talking point with the governments in power of Britain from 1951 to the present day. The political and economic issues of Britain's entrance in to the EEC have been interpreted differently by different parties. My opinion would say that there are more political issues which kept Britain out of rather than the economic issues which seem to be less scarce. There are a lot more political reasons why Britain did not enter the EEC before 1973 and the main issue being the loss of sovereignty. Britain feared it would lose sovereignty to the EEC. A loss of sovereignty would erode parliament's ability to make law and parliament would lose the ability to keep effective checks on policy making, as the main legislation making process would be held in Brussels. The Shuman plan outlined that the member states would have to lose sovereignty before they began discussing the plans details. ...read more.

Middle

This is due to the fact that British industrialisation had been built on the back of the coal and steel industries, and labour had only just nationalised the industries which was a popular socialist policy. This political issue definitely was an issue why Britain was kept out of the EEC until 1973, although it was not all of Britain's decision making that kept them out. When Macmillan in 1961 and other Prime ministers tried to enter the EEC they had their applications vetoed by the French president general de Gaulle. De Gaulle wanted to lead Europe and he saw Britain as a threat to his leadership, he also wanted Europe free of American influence, politically he saw Europe as the 'Third Force' between the superpowers. When the Shuman plan began the French gave Britain 24 hours to decide if they were going to attend the talks which persuaded them to say no, this gave the impression that the French didn't want Britain. Britain's relationship with France was further frayed due to the Suez Crisis of 1956 where a lot of good feeling was lost between the two countries. ...read more.

Conclusion

As well as the political issues which I have outlined there were also economic reasons why Britain didn't join the EEC before 1973. Firstly Britain had the strongest industry at the time. Foreign Secretary Herbert Morrison told the cabinet that 'the Durham miners won't wear it'. Any country with the strongest coal and steel industries would have the same view that they would want to share it with less prosperous countries. Linking in to my last point, The European economy was also very weak; Britain thought that it would have a detrimental effect and would bring the British economy down to the European level. In conclusion I believe that it was political issues more than economic issues that kept Britain out of Europe for over 20 years. Although the political decisions do lead on to create some of the economic issues the political issues are a lot more important. The two key issues are sovereignty and the idea of a capitalist Europe. These issues had a knock on effect and meant that Britain was never totally committed to Europe and consequently any applications over 10 years were vetoed by General de Gaulle. A Level - British History 27/09/04 Ian Keevil 13HD ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Politics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Politics essays

  1. How much influence does the media have on the political process

    This brings us to the theory of opinion forming. In his article On Media Giantism William Safire describes the fast consolidation of ownership of radio stations and popular websites and the result is that "the great cacophony of different sounds and voices is being amalgamated and homogenized" [5].

  2. Kashmir Issue and Mediation.

    He was overthrown in military coup led by Yahya Khan. Despite domestic opposition, both sides did respect the terms of the Declaration at least as far as practical measures were concerned. Prisoners-of-war were repatriated and by 25 February 1966 their forces had withdrawn to their pre-5 August.

  1. Multicultural Britain

    There was reasonably little migration into Britain, other than from Ireland and Russia, until New Commonwealth immigration began in the 1950s. Legislation in the early 1970s was intended to reduce this to a trickle. In practice, it continued at the rate of half a million acceptances for settlement every decade.

  2. Pakistan's Political and Economic Development

    strong bureaucracy led the way for feudal aristocrats and a group of rich professionals and merchants to carve policies.3 The policies initiated were favorable to the political elite rather than the ordinary people. This weak and hardly entrenched way of governance paved the way for the armed forces in the political structure of the nation.

  1. Minority Rights, Identity Politics and Gender in Bangladesh: Current Problems and Issues

    It has been thought that this would break their economic backbone so that they would have to sell off their lands very cheaply to the dominant community. One wonders in such cases how such militaristic thinking seemed to have pervaded even the dominant political trends in society!

  2. The development of political thought - John Locke

    Government should be designed or organized to limit its powers in order to protect individual rights and thus reduce the need for such extreme measures. The Americans who ratified the Constitution in 1787 gave explicit consent to their new government.

  1. The Mexican Economy

    Traditionally, the government also emphasized Mexicanization of industry, and local control of companies engaged in mining, fishing, transportation, and exploitation of forests was required by law. More recently, however, foreign investment in new enterprises has been actively encouraged, and government controls on some sectors of the economy have been loosened.

  2. Prospects for India's development

    Initiatives and Barriers Securities Market * Deregulation of foreign institutional investors (FIIs) by gradually lifting foreign capitalization ceilings. * Improvements in securities markets infrastructure (settlement and custody) reduced transaction costs and risks though dematerialization of securities and reliable clearing systems based on advanced computing technologies.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work