Amsterdam Treaty

Amsterdam Treaty in Europe

History of the European Union: Amsterdam Treaty

Introduction to Amsterdam Treaty

Popular reactions against some elements of the Maastricht Treaty led to another intergovernmental conference among EU leaders that began in March 1996. This IGC produced the Amsterdam Treaty, which revised the Maastricht Treaty and other founding EU documents. The revisions were intended to make the EU more attractive and relevant to ordinary people.

The Amsterdam Treaty called on member nations to cooperate to create jobs throughout Europe, protect the environment, improve public health, and safeguard consumer rights. In addition, the treaty provided for the removal of barriers to travel and immigration among the EU member states except for the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Denmark, all of which retained their original border controls. The treaty included the potential for cooperation and integration with the Western European Union (WEU), an organization of Western European powers focused on defense. It also allowed the possibility of admitting countries from Eastern Europe to the EU. The Amsterdam Treaty was signed by EU members on October 2, 1997.

A document issued by the European Commission (the EU’s highest administrative body) in 1997, known as Agenda 2000, outlined a strategy for EU enlargement under the Amsterdam Treaty. The document called for wide-ranging reforms within the EU before any enlargement agreement could move forward. These included measures to increase economic growth, competitiveness, and employment; agricultural and structural reforms; and a new European financial framework.” (1)

Amsterdam Treaty and the European Union


See Also

  • Treaty of Amsterdam


Notes and References

  • Information about Amsterdam Treaty in the Encarta Online Encyclopedia
  • Guide to Amsterdam Treaty

    More Topics about the European Union

    European Economic Area, European Union, European Union History (including European Union Early Cooperation, Benelux Customs Union, European Coal and Steel Community, European Economic Community, European Community, Expansion of the EC, Single European Act, Creation of the European Union, Treaty on European Union, Amsterdam Treaty, Treaty of Nice, Treaty of Lisbon, Monetary Union and EU Growing Accountability), EU Pillar System, EU Major Bodies Structure, European Commission, Council of the European Union, European Parliament, European Court of Justice, Court of Auditors, European Central Bank, Economic and Social Committee, Committee of the Regions, European Union Policies, Common Agricultural Policy, Common Fisheries Policy,

    EU Economic Differences, European Regional Development Fund, European Social Fund, Cohesion Fund, European Investment Bank, European Monetary System, Economic and Monetary Union, EU International Relations, EU Expansion,

    EU and Non-European Nations and European Union Future.

    Definition of Amsterdam Treaty

    In accordance with the work A Dictionary of Law, this is a description of Amsterdam Treaty : The EU treaty signed in Amsterdam in 1997(in force from 1 May 1999), which amended provisions of the *Treaty of Rome (European Community Treaty) and the *Maastricht Treaty (Treaty on European Union). Among other effects, the Amsterdam Treaty increased the powers of the European Parliament by extending the *codecision procedure to all areas covered by qualified majority voting and enabled the *Social Chapter to be incorporated into the Treaty of Rome.

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