Competition, Cartels and Their Regulation

By John Perry Miller | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 10
ECONOMICS AND POLITICS OF THE COMMON MARKET

PIERRE URI

Formerly Director General with the Europeans Communities


I. INTRODUCTION

The Common Market grew out of the Schuman Plan. Some of the men who were instrumental in formulating and setting up the Schuman Plan were equally prominent in the preparation and the success of the Common Market. The political inspiration was the same: to create a united Europe. The first effort toward integration, accomplished in a limited sector, had suffered from the failure of the European Defense Community, and would have lost all momentum had it not been extended to new fields. One of the most spectacular of these fields appeared to be that of Atomic Energy. But it rapidly became evident that there was no particular reason why six countries should get together to explore the unknown possibilities and promises of atomic energy if they were not united in other areas by ties broader than those of two basic industries. A step toward the formation of a general common market was required by the creation of the Euratom. At the time of the negotiation of the Schuman Treaty, a special clause had been discussed for the case integration should remain limited to the two sectors the Treaty endorsed. Although this clause was economically justified, since the conditions of equilibrium for two integrated sectors are different from what they normally would be in a case of general integration, it was considered politically untimely. It illustrated, however, the degree to which this first effort called forth the idea of a general common market.

Stated another way, the Schuman Plan had no intention of providing the prototype for integration brought about by the successive integration of sectors. If it succeeded in establishing common bases for development, it served also, in what was at first a limited sector, to bring to light the problems and the solutions peculiar to a case of broader integration. Nevertheless, it was still necessary to avoid

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