European Union (EU)

European Union (EU)

The European Union is an economic and political union made up (as of March 2021) of 27 countries. Member States retain their independence but have delegated some of their sovereignty in areas where the benefits of pooled solutions are deemed to be superior to stand-alone solutions. Member States hand over some decision-making to EU institutions: the European Parliament, the European Council, the Council of the European Union, and the European Commission. At the heart of the EU is the single market, which allows for free movement of people, goods, services and capital. The EU has also created a single currency, the euro, which is used by 19 member States. The EU is active across a wide range of areas, including migration and asylum; borders and security; the economy, business and industry, banking and finance; employment and social affairs; education and training; research and innovation; transportation; agriculture, rural development, maritime affairs and fisheries; the environment and climate action; energy; foreign affairs and security policy; trade and customs; international co-operation and development; humanitarian aid and civil protection; justice; public health; food safety; consumer protection; competition; culture and media; and sport.

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