No. 14




EU Future Prospects and Estonia: Opportunities and Choices

18 December 2006


RiTo No. 14, 2006

  • Jane Õispuu

    political science doctoral degree candidate, University of Tübingen

The article views the various scenarios for the future of the European Union as seen by a small member state such as Estonia.

The EU’s period of stagnation can be analysed in three different dimensions: an institutional crisis, crisis of confidence and crisis of vision. Even though the EU future debate has been fairly sluggish, three main future strategies have nevertheless developed, of which each one tries to provide an answer to one of the EU “crisis” dimensions. From Estonia’s perspective, the most favourable solution would be to implement a constitution for Europe or carrying out its core reforms, as this will strengthen the community method, prevent the spread of intergovernmentalism and improve the effectiveness of EU policy. We should be careful with various “cherry picking” and “Europe of projects” strategies, which do not promise a long-term solution to the problems of the EU. In the case of “core-Europe” strategies, special attention should be paid to enhanced cooperation taking place outside of EU treaties – a core Europe formed in such a manner would signify the most negative development from the point of view of both Estonia and other new member states.

Full article in Estonian