As of February 2007, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Romania, Slovenia and Spain have ratified this treaty. The referenda in Spain and Luxembourg showed that such a constitution was agreeable to most of the people. Moreover, countries like Finland, Germany and Slovakia had made all the necessary preparations for its ratification.
The National legislation of the Member States has to be amended in order to ratify the European Constitution. Referenda of citizens' opinions play an important role in this process of ratification of the European Constitution. The European Constitution cannot be implemented until and unless all the Member States ratify it. Implementation of the Constitutional Treaty requires the consent of all the Member States of the European Union. The Constitutional Treaty will not be enforced even if one Member State refuses to accept it. This has been termed as the vetoing of the Constitution. While the Constitutional Treaty was made the subject of national referenda quite some debate transpired in respect of national interests. The fact that such a constitution would prove to be of advantage to both the Union and its Member States was not debated (Shaw, 2005).
The future of Europe has been discussed since the time that the European Council had undertaken a Declaration on the future of the European Union in the y...
This Declaration known as the Laeken Declaration proposed the adoption of a Constitution for Europe. It was also agreed to form a Convention comprising of representatives from the governments and parliaments of the Member States. In this manner the foundation for a Constitutional Treaty for Europe was in Rome in the year 2004 and it was approved by the Heads of State and government of the Member States.
The Constitutional Treaty of the European Union
In order to countenance future challenges an attempt was made by the European Constitution to modify the European Union. It is essential for the European Union to exhibit faster reflexes and to function in a highly coherent manner and in addition its effectiveness is dependent on the simplification of its procedures. The purpose of the European Constitution is to specify the manner in which the European Union is to function. Accordingly, the powers of the European Union have been described in an all inclusive manner.
The Charter of Fundamental Freedoms, which comprises the most important part of the European Union law, assures civil and political rights to all the citizens of the European Union. Moreover, it specifies the norms to which any piece of European Union legislation has to conform. Furthermore, this instrument augments the powers of the European Parliament. In addition, it compels the Council of Ministers to make laws in the public, which increases the responsibility of the European Union.
The present system of having a Presidency of the Union by rotation is to be replaced by a two and a half year period presidency. It has been the considered opinion of the experts that such a measure will enhance the