Friday, 24 June 2016

Europe, Eurozone, European Union, #BrExit is more about British than EU

The world is watching with a great interest to see if Britain will leave the European Union (EU), and topics similar to this have been surfacing every now and then from the time the EU was formed. Here's an attempt to present what's happening for those who may want to understand this complicated stuff in simple words (hopefully).

Approximately 50 countries form a part of Europe
Its the second smallest continent by surface area (2% of earth, 7% of land)
Russia is the largest country in Europe, both by area and population, and Vatican city the smallest
Europe has roughly 11% of world population (~740 million)

European Union
Union of 28 countries primarily in Europe that have decided to have close coordination among themselves. The EU has 7 decision making bodies -  European Parliament (legislature), European Council (impetus & direction), Council of the EU (legislature), European Commission (executive), Court of Justice of the EU (judiciary), European Central Bank (ECB), and Court of Auditors. These institution were established around 1958 when the European Community was being created.
EU has ~7.5% of world population but generates ~24% of the world's GDP (nominal, 2014).
26/28 countries have a very high human development index.
EU won the Nobel peace prize in 2012.
Total area of EU countries is 4.4m sqkm (approximately 32% more than India).
UK is a part of EU

Eurozone or Euro Area
A monetary union of 19 of the 28 European Union (EU) member states that have the Euro (€) as their common currency

Who are these 19 countries that have EUR as their currency?
Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Spain.

Who are the 9 countries of the EU that do NOT have EUR as their currency?
Bulgaria- Bulgarian lev, Croatia - Croatian kun, Czech Republic - Czech koruna, Denmark - Danish krone, Hungary - Hungarian forint, Poland - Polish złoty, Romania - Fourth Romanian leu, Sweden - Swedish krona, United Kingdom - Pound sterling

Now, UK wants to exit the European Union for several reasons, which are very well discussed by several people across the world. The reasons stated include political reasons, economy related reasons, immigration related reasons, reasons relating to UK's contribution to EU bailout packages that is an additional burden, and so on.

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