chapter  8
19 Pages

The late 1980s and the road to ‘1992’

Armed with its main new programme, the Internal Market White Paper, and with the SEA spelling out other areas for task expansion and the institutional means, the EC appeared to have regained its élan. The questions to be confronted were, however, significant. First, how coherent were the proposals? Second, what of the problems, not so much of preparing the draft legislation in the Commission (considerable though these were) but of the subsequent stages – agreeing it, implementing and policing it? Third, would the Community be able to stick to the task it had set itself or would it once again be ‘blown off course’? Together, these three related questions amount to asking how ambitious the programme was. No less important, it was to prove, was a fourth: what of the external implications of the programme, both ‘locally’ – for relations with EFTA, eastern and southern Europe – and globally – GATT, the USA and Japan in particular?