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Admission of European Free Trade Association states to the European Community: effects on voting power in the European Community Council of Ministers

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  • Hosli, Madeleine O.
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    Several member states of the European Free Trade Association have applied for admission into the European Community (EC). Paradoxically, enlarging the EC in this way will expand the voting power of Luxembourg, the smallest EC member state, in the EC Council of Ministers but diminish the power of the other states. In an EC with more members, voting by unanimity increasingly becomes an impractical decision-making procedure. As the Single European Act and possibly also the Treaty on European Union are being implemented, the distribution of EC council voting power takes on growing importance, since the range of issues to be decided by qualified majority votes increases considerably. Moreover, there are tendencies within the EC to render decision making more transparent and to publish member states' positions taken in majority votes. Thus, the distribution of voting power will increasingly be a crucial aspect for the EC.

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    Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal International Organization.

    Volume (Year): 47 (1993)
    Issue (Month): 04 (September)
    Pages: 629-643

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    Handle: RePEc:cup:intorg:v:47:y:1993:i:04:p:629-643_02
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