The setting up of Zone 1 may start in parallel to the transition of the Eurozone into the EF. There will be no separate constitution for the EFCA. Instead, the EF constitution will cover the rights and obligations of the EFCA members, which in principle should become federated with the EF within 5 years.
The rights of accepting new members, suspending, or expelling members will be the sole privilege of the EF. EFCA members will have the right to sit in the EF Parliament but will not be have the same voting rights as the EF’s MPs.
Such a setup might initially create some tensions between the EF and EFCA. Tensions may arise because of the perceived benefits of the membership of the EF, not available to the EFCA member states. But that could only increase the motivation of the EFCA members to join the EF. The greatest benefit from this setup would be to show the EFCA members that the EF works and any problems it might have could be overcome. This is an optimistic assumption, I agree. It could also create some additional risks that are not present right now, and which might occur because of the changed political situation in the member countries of the EFCA. But at the same time, federalization of the Eurozone into EF and creating a separate EFCA zone for the remaining members could eliminate many more risks that threaten the unity of the EU today, like the looming Euro crisis, or different agenda in foreign policy, etc. Therefore, the EU would have to take up such a risk.
Any new member state joining the EFCA zone will have to accept the relevant articles of the EF Constitution and on that basis amend its own constitution. Here is an additional list of the articles of the EF Constitution that would not apply to new EFCA members:
- Constitutional relevance. The joining members will:
- Become a member of the EFCA
- Make all necessary preparation to become federated with the EF within 5 years
- Accept the EF Constitution based on Consensual Presidential Democracy
- Support at times of utmost urgency the actions of the President or the Prime Minister of the EF if they have to react to events at national or global scale within hours, even if it meant a temporary suspension of the EFCA member’s sovereignty rights
- Strongly support the process of decision making within their own government at all levels through consensus rather than arbitrarily impose the rule of majority
- Respect for the rulings of the European Constitutional Court and the European Court of Justice. Each member’s constitution will have to be approved by the European Constitutional Court for its adherence to the EF values.
- Electoral system for the EFCA. This will be the same as for the EF, i.e. Proportional representation system in place to select candidates. The Two Rounds System (TRS) ensuring that each candidate gets at least 50% of votes plus 1. However, the EFCA MPs may not have the right to vote on all EF matters.
- Electoral systems within the EFCA nations. As long as the EF Constitutional Court accepts them as ‘democratic’ voting systems, it should be up to those countries, which system they select, since the voting system should suit a particular cultural and ethnic composition of a given country.
- President of the EF is the Head of EFCA. He represents EFCA to external organizations, and chairs some of the meetings of the EFCA.
- Foreign affairs area. The EFCA members relinquish their rights to carry out their foreign policy, which is carried out by the EF Foreign Minister on behalf of all EFCA members.
- Defence area. This area would no longer be a competency of a member state joining the EFCA. However, over the first year, the member state’s Defence Minister will be an advisor on the former member state’s defence policy.
- Single Market. All members benefit from a single market for all goods, services and capital as well as to freedom of movement, settlement, setting up businesses etc. for all citizens of the EFCA. However, there are differences to the entitlements and benefits, such as unemployment benefit level.
- Customs Union. All EFCA members must also be members of the EF Customs Union
- Trading relationship with non–EF countries. No EFCA member state can enter into trading relationship with a non-EF country. Any foreign investment in a member country above the pre-authorized level is not allowed without the agreement with the EF Government
- State aid and Mergers & Acquisitions. Companies cannot get any state aid nor conclude any M&A transaction above the agreed level without a prior agreement with the EF Government
- Fiscal policy and common budget. The EFCA members will send 5% of their budget to be managed by the EF central budget, from which some common EF projects will be financed, including projects in the contributing country.
- Opt-outs. There are no opt-outs allowed of any agreed policy of the EFCA in this zone.
- EFCA Enlargement principles. The accession of new member candidates to the EF, or a suspension or expelling of the existing member states will be the sole prerogative of the EF.