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date: 24 September 2017

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the procedures for acceding to and withdrawing from the European Union. It is argued that, while determined by (Member) states’ decisions, accession and withdrawal are also driven by EU institutions, and by the canons of the EU legal order. Indeed, more than simply governing the entry into, and the exit from the Union, the two procedures fulfil a specific function in relation to its objective of an ‘ever closer union amongst the peoples of Europe’. As such, they are fully embedded in the system of the treaties, and form an integral part of the evolving EU constitutional structure they underpin.

Keywords: accession, enlargement, withdrawal, exit, EU institutions, democratic choice, integration capacity, constitution, conditions, European integration

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