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Maciamo
02-05-04, 10:23
The European Union has welcomed 10 new, mostly Eastern European countries today (1 May 2004). That brings the total population of the EU from 380 to 455 million, and adding 444bn euro of extra GDP
(up to 9,613bn).

Statistically, that means that the EU are now about 56% more populous than the US (up 25%), while covering only 41% of the US land area. The EU's GDP is 11,5 trillion US$ at current exchange rate, against 10,45 trillion US$ for the US, making the EU the largest economy in the world (actually no change here, as it was already 11 trillion before the expansion).



http://news.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/spl/hi/europe/04/enlarging_europe/img/new_member_map300.gif
The enlargement was celebrated throughout the night under the Irish presidency (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/3677257.stm) of the EU.


As the flags were raised and fluttered together in the wind, a choir sang the EU's anthem, Beethoven's Ode to Joy.

Surrounded by the lush green lawns and magnificent trees of Dublin's Phoenix Park, the leaders did look, while the ceremony went on, like members of a large and happy family.


http://news.bbc.co.uk/media/images/40104000/jpg/_40104001_euprague_ap300.jpg
http://news.bbc.co.uk/media/images/40103000/jpg/_40103749_germany_ap-300x220.jpg

Please visit the BBC's guide to the EU expansion (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/shared/spl/hi/europe/04/enlarging_europe/html/introduction.stm)

Maciamo
05-06-08, 12:03
The Economist has published a new article (http://www.economist.com/specialreports/displayStory.cfm?story_id=11436623) explaining why the EU's eastward enlargement came at an opportune time, and why it might not have been possible a few years later.