European Union - Statistics & Facts
Statistics and facts on the European Union (EU)
The European Union is described foremost as a political and economic partnership-type institution with 28 member states, all of them European countries. Also commonly shortened to just ‘the EU’, the European Union was founded after the end of the Second World War. Starting goals were aimed at ensuring peace and stability for nations shaken and torn apart by by the horrors of the war, as well as preventing another such conflict from ever taking place again. Consolidation and common goals for prosperity were a big theme in the early days of the EU. Statistics on the number of conflicts in Europe report 15 violent conflicts in 2013, which, while being a slightly higher number than in previous years, is still lower than the peak of 21 conflicts in 2007.
The European Union aimed to establish economic cooperation and partnerships between European countries. Interdependence in trading was seen as a guarantee for peaceful relationships between nations. While EU beginnings may have had a basis in economic goals, activities in the European Union also encompass environmental policy, cultural development, integration policy and international exchange as well as the promotion of human rights. The influence the EU wields on the world stage is significant, both economically and politically. According to EU statistics concerning US direct investment position in Europe, in 2014, investments amounted to over two trillion dollars.
The unification of European countries began in the 1950s through the European Coal and Steel Community. Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands were the six founding members of the EU. 1957 saw the creation of the Treaty of Rome, which gave birth to the European Economic Community (EEC), or the so-called ‘Common Market’. The European Union has basically become an enormous market of its own with a common currency used by a number of its member states – the euro. Experts have been divided on the introduction of the euro in 2001 as have citizens. Since the economic crisis of 2008, the euro has had its fair share of hard times. EU statistics on the monthly inflation rate report 0.1 percent for October 2015, compared to the same month in the previous year. The official national debt level in the EU in the second quarter of 2015 showed the United Kingdom at the top of the list with over two trillion euros worth of national debt.
In the 1960s, the European Union stopped countries charging custom taxes for trading with each other. In this decade, joint control over food production was also introduced. European Union statistics state that France, Great Britain and Germany are among the largest national markets for food products. Later in the 1970s, the EU member circle expanded to include Denmark, Ireland and the UK. Other crucial events in the history of the world took place in the European Union during this time as well, the Salazar rule in Portugal crumbled, as did the regime of General Franco in Spain.
The Berlin Wall came down in 1989, leading to Germany’s reunification in October 1990. As a result of this event in particular, closer ties were forged between European countries and mutual interest about European issues began to strengthen. The quality of life changed. The average life expectancy in Europe is also very high, with 81 years on average for Western Europe.
In later years, the European Union cancelled border control and introduced the Schengen Agreement – citizens are able to travel freely between different European countries. This of course led to more Europeans and international citizens taking up studying and working within Europe. However, the economic crisis did affect unemployment levels, making it an ever-present issue. As statistics from October 2015 show, the EU unemployment rate in member states of the European Union was highest in Spain and Greece.
The main institutions involved in European Union legislation and policy are the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union and the European Commission.
One of the most serious issues currently facing the European Union is the ongoing economic crisis, which is also affecting the futures and job prospects of Europeans.
Photo: istockphoto.com / aleksl
|Total population of the EU||505.67m||Details →|
|Number of live births in the EU||5.23m||Details →|
|Population density in the EU||116.3||Details →|
|Economy and Economic Indicators||Values||Statistic|
|Gross domestic product of the EU||€13.08tn||Details →|
|Per capita GDP in the EU||€25,500||Details →|
|Unemployment rate in the Euro area||12%||Details →|
|Youth unemployment rate in the Euro area||23.9%||Details →|
|General gross debt of the EU||€11.01tn||Details →|
|National debt of the EU in relation to the GDP||87.74%||Details →|
|Greece's national debt in relation to GDP||175.1%||Details →|
|Budget balance of the UK||€-117.56bn||Details →|
|Germany's contribution to the EU budget||€22,820.2m||Details →|
|Poland's budget expenditures||€15,735.8m||Details →|
- EU - U.S. exports 1997-2014EU - U.S. exports 1997-2014
Volume of U.S. exports to the EU from 1997 to 2014 (in billion U.S. dollars)
- Direct investment position of the U.S. in Europe 2000-2014Direct investment position of the U.S. in Europe 2000-2014
Direct investment position of the United States in Europe from 2000 to 2014 (in trillion U.S. dollars, on a historical-cost basis)
- Agricultural greenhouse gas emissions in the EU+Agricultural greenhouse gas emissions in the EU
Greenhouse gas emissions caused by agricultural production in the European Union from 2010 to 2025 (in million metric tons)*
- Conflicts in Europe by intensity 2014+Conflicts in Europe by intensity 2014
Number of conflicts in Europe from 2005 to 2014, by conflict intensity
- EU countries: households with internet access 2006-2013+EU countries: households with internet access 2006-2013
Percentage of households with internet access in EU countries from 2006 to 2013
- European Union - oil production in barrels per day1998-2014+European Union - oil production in barrels per day1998-2014
Oil production in the European Union from 1998 to 2014 (in 1,000 barrels per day)
- Coal - proved reserves in the EU+Coal - proved reserves in the EU
Proved coal reserves in the European Union from 2008 to 2014 (in million metric tons)
- Nuclear energy consumption in the EU 2014+Nuclear energy consumption in the EU 2014
Nuclear energy consumption in the EU from 1998 to 2014 (in million metric tons of oil equivalent)
- Monthly inflation rate in the Euro area October 2015Monthly inflation rate in the Euro area October 2015
Inflation rate in the Euro area from October 2014 to October 2015 (compared to the same month of the previous year)
- The largest markets for food products in 2010 and 2014The largest markets for food products in 2010 and 2014
Estimate of the volume (in billion euros) of the largest national markets for food products in 2010 and 2014*
- Unemployment rate in EU countries October 2015Unemployment rate in EU countries October 2015
Unemployment rate in member states of the European Union in October 2015 (seasonally adjusted)
- National debt in EU countries 2nd quarter 2015National debt in EU countries 2nd quarter 2015
National debt in the member states of the European Union in the 2nd quarter 2015 (in billion euros)
- Life expectancy in Europe in 2013Life expectancy in Europe in 2013
Average life expectancy* in Europe for those born in 2013, by gender and region (in years)
- Chinese direct investments (FDI) in the European Union 2013, by sector+Chinese direct investments (FDI) in the European Union 2013, by sector
Cash flow and capital stock of Chinese direct investments (FDI) in the European Union in 2013, by sector (in million U.S. dollars)
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