From EPC to CFSP
Despite the setback of the failure to ratify the European Defence Community in 1954 the EU never gave up the aim of a common foreign and security policy. The first hesitant steps occurred during the 1970s, and then the pace quickened with the development of European Political Co-operation (EPC), given treaty status in the 1987 Single European Act (SEA). This was an inter-governmental method of co-operation different from the traditional Community way of making decisions. The end of the Cold War paved the way for the 1992 Maastricht Treaty that saw the establishment of the CFSP. But the CFSP could not have been set up at a worse time, with the break-up of the former Yugoslavia. The first decade of the CFSP was very difficult, with little agreement over aims and objectives. The EU’s failure in the Balkans in the 1990s, however, was the catalyst for the development of the EU’s military capabilities and the creation of the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP). Further changes were agreed in the Treaties of Amsterdam (1997) and Nice (2001) which helped strengthen the CFSP and the ESDP.