chapter  11
16 Pages

MERCOSUR’s Contribution to Democratic Consolidation

ByChristian Pirzer

The European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), precursor to the European Union (EU), was founded in 1951 with the intention to stabilize post-war Europe through economic development and the diffusion of democratic values. After 60 years of existence, its success regarding these principles can hardly be questioned. Nowadays democracy is consolidated in nearly all EU member states and the further enlargement of the union has contributed to the subsequent democratization of the new member states. Thus, it is fair to state that the European Union actively promotes democratic rule. But is this a uniquely European experience or is it possible that other democratic regional organizations can promote democratization processes within their member states as well?