Volume 42 (2015) / Issue 3
The principle of solidarity has informed the whole European integration process but with the Treaty of Lisbon, this concept has become centre-stage. A number of provisions within the European Union (EU) treaties refer directly or indirectly to this concept. It has, however, also to be remarked that in the past solidarity has often meant different things to different people and the financial crisis which was accompanied by loud cries for and against solidarity has again given proof to this fact. In Article 222 TFEU (Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union) a broad provision on solidarity is to be found: ‘The Union and its Member States shall act jointly in a spirit of solidarity if a Member State is the object of a terrorist attack or the victim of a natural or man-made-disaster.’ Although not addressing solidarity in an all-encompassing way it refers to important fields of solidarity action. By the Decision of 24 June 2014 the main aspects of this Solidarity Clause were implemented. Although the Union has chosen a prudent approach it will be shown that this approach was the most appropriate one to make solidarity manageable. Within the present attempts to keep the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) on track, important insights can be obtained from this discussion.
All rights reserved