Chapter

Resisting EMU: Political Strategy, Policy Entrepreneurship, and Policy Reflection Before the IGC

Kenneth Dyson and Kevin Featherstone

in The Road To Maastricht

Published in print October 1999 | ISBN: 9780198296386
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599125 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/019829638X.003.0015
 Resisting EMU: Political Strategy, Policy Entrepreneurship, and Policy Reflection Before the IGC

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The emergence of EMU on the European agenda caught Whitehall off guard. The task soon became one of resistance. Two alternative plans were launched—for a competing currency, then for a common currency—but their motivation and purpose remained uncertain. Mrs Thatcher saw them as a means to delay or dilute EMU. Lawson, Howe, and Major favoured a more constructive engagement in the EMU debate. Both the alternative plans failed to restructure the debate in Europe, a feature to be explained by both short‐ and long‐term conditions affecting British policy‐making. Strategic miscalculations (concerning the Delors Committee, as well as the British alternatives) were evident in the perception of the balance of political forces and the ability of Britain to reshape them.

Keywords: Britain; currencies; Delors Committee; EMU; Geoffrey Howe; Nigel Lawson; John Major; policy‐making; Margaret Thatcher

Chapter.  22707 words. 

Subjects: European Union

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