The reason why the Eastern enlargement has been chosen as a topic for investigation is because it is believed that this subject has not been given enough attention in current literature. The EU‟s plan of integrating Ukraine was therefore chosen as the lead case study in this thesis, since it allows for investigating the EU‟s relations with Russia.
Why then, is it of interest to investigate the EU‟s relations with Russia? It is of interest because the Eastern enlargements in 2004 and 2007 included several former Soviet states and satellites, whose membership weakened the EU‟s relations with Russia. As the EU is dependent on Russian gas supplies, the Eastern enlargements need to be weighted against the EU‟s relations with Russia. Thus, as future enlargements will continue eastwards, pushing the European borders closer to Russian territory, it is necessary to take on the effects of enlargement on the EU‟s relations with Russia.
The case of Ukraine will therefore be compared with the two cases of Hungary and Lithuania, for the purpose of investigating Ukraine‟s potential integration in the EU.
According to Svenning (2003) the purpose of conducting research is to collect, produce, and deliver knowledge about the world (Svenning, 2003). Research is important because it allows room for questions and analysis that in turn provides better solutions for the future. Thus, if there is no room for questioning, there is no room for development.
Before conducting research, the researcher has to decide whether he/she wants to undertake the perspective of spectator or participant. The role of spectators is to observe, whereas the role of the participant is to affect. The perspective of a spectator is chosen in order to picture the Eastern European enlargement by using three case studies (Hungary, Lithuania, and Ukraine) in order to late undertake the perspective of Ukraine as a potential candidate of EU membership.
This thesis is a descriptive study, which means that detailed concepts will be defined for the purpose of describing a specific situation or event (Svenning, 2003). The specific situation (or event) within this thesis is the European enlargement.
The method used in thesis is the review of literature, where sources such as books, articles, official records and the Internet have been used for conducting research. The sources provide this thesis secondary data. Data collected by a researcher is either of primary or secondary nature. Primary data is collected directly by the user through i.e. case studies, experiments and clinical trials. Secondary data, on the other hand, is data that has been collected by someone other than the user, which can be used to i.e. test the validity of the data, and reviewing literature.
In order to be able to analyse the stated problem, the researcher has to decide whether he or she should use a qualitative or quantitative approach to data. The difference between the two is that a qualitative study is supported by text, whereas a quantitative study is supported by mathematic formulas. Studies using a qualitative approach to data are inductive, and refer to conclusions being based on experiences. Quantitative studies, on the other hand, have a determined true value that only can be verified through falsification. These types of studies are therefore deductive.
According to Svenning (2003), the aim with a qualitative analysis of data is to map interpretations of reality in order to enable for the finding of a consistent pattern. The purpose of a qualitative study is to exemplify whereas a qualitative study generalizes e.g. a situation, process or event (Svenning, 2003). Thus, as this thesis does not depend on any mathematic formulas or falsification of true values, it stands clear that a qualitative approach to data should be used in this thesis. Magne and Solvang (1997) add that a qualitative study enables for determining if the information has general validity or not. The purpose of conducting research by using a qualitative method, they say, is to get a deeper understanding of the complex problem studied.
According to Paulsson (1999) there are three central concepts in methodology to keep in mind when writing a thesis or a report, and these are: validity, reliability, and objectivity. Validity represents to which degree one measures the intended research area. Reliability stands for the degree of credibility of the methods used. Objectivity accounts for what extent one‟s own values and beliefs have affected the study. The purpose of these three concepts is to help researchers to abdicate their personal values and beliefs when conducting research (Paulsson, 1999). The role of the researcher is thus to obtain the highest degree of validity, reliability, and objectivity as possible.
After having checked for all these steps accounted for above, the researcher has to determine whether he or she wants to take the perspective of what Svenning (2003) calls an ” observer” or a “participant” whereas Magne and Solvang (1997) calls it for “open” or “closed observation”. Despite the choice of words, the purpose is the same. A researcher can choose to conduct a research by either observing or participating in a specific situation. Svenning (2003) writes that researchers that conduct quantitative studies usually undertake the role of an “observer” whereas researchers conducting qualitative studies (especially within the field of political science) mostly choose the role of a “participant” (Svenning, 2003).
The reason for choosing the role as a participant when performing a qualitative study is that the researcher seeks to go on a deeper level of understanding a certain situation. Even though, this thesis is based on a qualitative approach to data, the role is not taken as a participant, but rather as an observer.
The reason for choosing the role of an observer is because this thesis takes on a foreign political perspective, and does not make any in-depth analysis of a specific situation that requires participation within that area. However, the EU‟s experiences with Hungary and Lithuania, Ukraine‟s strategic partnership with the EU, and its resulting relations with Russia can hopefully assist to clarify where the EU should draw its final borderline.
New technology has contributed to rapid information flows. The IT revolution has given the world Internet, and Internet has given the accessibility of information to anyone, anywhere, at any time. Even though Internet is not the only source for finding information, it certainly raised the degree of information flows, of which humans are exposed to, dramatically. Subsequently forcing people to become more critical and selective to the information they intake. Consequently, people filter large amounts of information on a daily basis, many times even unconsciously.
Magne and Solvang (1997) write that there is no such thing as neutral or non-value based research. The two authors claim that independently which areas a researcher chooses to study, the researcher will sooner or later reach a point where he/she base his/her conditions on personal values and beliefs. However, by accepting, rather than denying this fact, researchers can get a better hold of reality.
As society changes constantly the societal environment becomes very complex. The researcher is therefore interested in simplifying the reality that he or she observes. Magne and Solvang (1997) mean that researchers have responsibility towards themselves and to the ones that will read their work to provide with reliable information. It is therefore important that researchers are honest and describe their own value premises to the extent that they are aware of (Magne & Solvang, 1997).
Personal values and beliefs have therefore been kept aside to the highest extent possible. Sensitive questions have not been given direct answers, but rather alternatives, aiming to show that there might be many truths corresponding to the same reality. The reader is nevertheless encouraged to reflect by its own when embracing the contents of this thesis.
The sources used within this thesis are credible, but to some extent biased. The authors, especially within the field of integration theories, have chosen to include the theories that they consider the most important within this field. Thus leaving out what some may consider as relevant theories. However, as the main focus of this thesis is not on integration theories, but on the enlargement towards East, the theories that have been most relevant for the discussion, have been selected to account for the framework of integration theories.
Much information has further been collected on the EU‟s own webpages, accounting for the most important steps in the EU‟s history in terms of signed treaties. The Commission‟s opinion on Hungary‟s and Lithuania‟s accession into the EU have been found very useful, and it is by no means believed that the Commission‟s opinions have been modified in order to speed up the process of accession, as it is lies in its greatest interest to propose accurate and reliable information, to ensure stability for acceding and existing Member States within the EU.
However, the most likely obstacle with the information provided on the EU‟s own webpages is dated material, as even though their webpages are updated constantly, old information of value is not altered. Yet, this fact does not constitute any problem for this thesis, as the EU‟s information mainly has been used for giving an introduction to the EU‟s background, and not for discussing current political situations.
Many newspaper and scientific articles have been used to complement selected literature, in order to bring accurate information and objectivity into this thesis. The articles have been selected due to their relevance for the topic. By accompanying this thesis with articles, the topic of enlargement has been brought closer to reality.
The main problem with the newspaper articles, provided by the Guardian and the BBC News, is biased information, as they mainly reflect Western interests. Nevertheless, as the two newspapers provide with articles written by journalists of both Eastern and Western descent, and since scientific articles have been used to complement the newspaper articles, the problem of biased information has been minimized.
History of the European Union with Respect to Enlargement
This chapter outlines a brief overview of the EU‟s history by highlighting the treaties that played (or will play) a major role in shaping the structure of the EU. The information provided in this chapter will be needed for understanding the causes behind the EU and its reasons for enlargement.
There are three main types of legal treaties on which the EU is founded: (1) founding treaties, (2) accession treaties, and (3) amending treaties (EurLex, 2009). Besides these treaties there are protocols, but as protocols are attachments to treaties, and do not outline any profound impact the design of the EU, they are not relevant for this thesis. Accession treaties will neither be given any special attention within this chapter. The importance of accession treaties is not denied, but as integration solely is seen as a part of the process of enlargement, they are excluded from this chapter.
By limiting this chapter to not include all treaties signed in relation to the establishment of the EU, the reader is spared from an excess flood of information. It is believed that this brief introduction of the EU‟s history shall be sufficient to enable the reader to follow the ideas behind the integration theories that will be introduced in chapter five.
The main focus within this chapter is thus levied on the founding and amending treaties that have played a major role in shaping the framework for enlargement. The founding treaties that will be presented are the ones that established: the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), the European Economic Community (EEC), and the European Union (EU). The key points of the Treaty Establishing a Constitution for the European Union will also be brought up within this section due to the significance it had for continued enlargement. The most significant amending treaties that will be mentioned in relation to the topic of enlargement are: the Single European Act (SEA), the Treaty of Amsterdam, the Treaty of Nice, and the Treaty of Lisbon.
The European Coal and Steel Community
Never before in human history have so many nations cooperated with one another and implemented so many common policies as has been done within the EU. The first movement towards what today is called the EU has its roots in the ECSC from the 1950‟s (EU WEB 3, 2009). In 1950, Robert Schuman who was the French minister of Foreign Affairs, proposed in his declaration of the creation of a common market. The common market involved the two most important economic sectors from that time, coal and steel. These sectors were further heavily used for military purposes. The reason behind establishing the ECSC was to avoid new conflicts between France and Germany to arise. It was believed that a supranational authority could control the two most important sectors within the armament industry, and thus unable future wars to occur (Moussis, 2000). The founding Member States were: Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.
The European Economic Community
The ECSC eventually became the EEC through the Treaty of Rome in 1957. The main purpose of the treaty was to create a common market between the Member States by eliminating trade barriers such as custom duties and import quotas. The treaty further implemented four basic freedoms such as the freedom of: movement of goods, services, workers and capital. The Community further enlarged to include six new members constituted by: the UK, Denmark, Norway, Ireland, Greece, Spain and Portugal (Moussis, 2000).
The European Union
The SEA in 1987 recognized the need to develop: (1) an Economic and Monetary Union, (2) a home and judicial affairs policy, and (3) a common foreign security policy. The response to this need came in 1992 through the Treaty of Maastricht, which established the EU the following year (EU WEB 4, 2009). The Treaty of Maastricht thus reformed the Community into a Union by introducing European citizenship, reinforcing the power of the European Parliament (EP), and launching the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU).
The Treaty on the European Union outlines a new stage in European integration theory, as it steered the integration from economic towards political integration.
The European Constitution
As the EU enlarged to include Austria, Finland and Sweden after its establishment, and later, with the two Eastern enlargements in 2004 and 2007, the countries: Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Romania and Bulgaria, there was a need for reform that could deal with an enlarged Union of 27 Member States. There was further a need to deal with the European citizens‟ demand for greater democratic control of their institutions (Blankart & Mueller, 2004).
Thus, Heads of States were eager to find solutions that could (1) enable for future enlargements and (2) bring citizens closer to political actions at the EU-level. The response to these two problems came with the Treaty Establishing a Constitution for the European Union, which aimed at giving the Union a fresh start by bringing all previous treaties together and replace them with a single treaty (BBC News 1, 2004). The Treaty Establishing a Constitution for the European Union will from now on be referred to as the Constitutional Treaty.
The current European Union is founded on the treaties on the EC and the EU (EU WEB 5, 2009). The Constitutional Treaty would merge the EC with the EU to a single personality. A single personality would give the Constitution, and law adopted by the Union, primacy over laws of National Parliaments in policy areas where it is allowed to legalizlate. By having legal personality, the EU would be enabled to enter into international agreements, which the EC unlike the EU has the right to do (BBC News 1, 2004).
Other changes that the treaty would have brought to the table are: (1) strengthened democracy, (2) permanent presidency for a period of two and a half years, (3) extended usage of the principle of qualified majority voting, (4) reduced number of commissioners, (5) a post of a Foreign Minister and (6) a voluntary withdrawal clause enabling states to withdraw their membership of the Union (BBC News 1, 2004).
1.2 Research Questions
2.1 The Research
3 History of the European Union with Respect to Enlargement
3.1 Founding Treaties
3.2 Amending Treaties
3.3 Chapter Overview: Integrating the East into the EU
4 A New World Order: The Argument for Integration .
4.1 A Solution for Peace
4.2 Economic Integration for Cooperation
4.3 Why Nation-States Give Up Their Sovereignty
4.4 Chapter Overview: Exchanging Sovereignty for Membership
5 Integration Theories
5.1 Integration for Cooperation
5.2 First Generation of Integration Theories
5.3 Second Generation of Integration Theories
5.4 Chapter Overview: The Second Generation of Integration Theories vs. Enlargement
6 The European Enlargement
6.1 The Meaning of Enlargement
6.2 Driving Forces behind the Enlargement
6.3 Criteria of Enlargement
6.4 Benefits of Enlargement
6.5 European Neighbourhood Policy: Drawing the Final Borderline
7 European Enlargement towards East
7.1 A Case Study of Hungary, Lithuania, and Ukraine
7.2 One Door Closes as a New One Opens
7.3 The EU’s Enlargement Policy towards the CEECs
7.4 Case Hungary
7.5 Case Lithuania
7.6 Case Ukraine
7.7 Chapter Overview: Enlargement and its Effects on the EU’s Relations with Russia
8 Discussion: EU and the Enlargement .
8.1 The Treaties: Creating Room for Enlargement?
8.2 EU: The Only Sustainable Solution in the Modern Era?
8.3 Integration Today: A third Generation of Integration Theories?
8.4 Drawing the Final Borderline: In or Out?
8.5 Ukraine: A Potential Member of the EU?
9.1 Findings .
9.2 The Research
9.3 Future Research
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The European Enlargement – To the East and Beyond?