Frequently asked questions (FAQ) 

Frequently asked questions to the EU Information Centre

    How did the EU begin?

    The present EU builds on the cooperation which began with the establishment of the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) back in 1952. The Coal and Steel Union, which this cooperation was also called, no longer exists today since the Treaty which formed the basis for it was concluded for a period of fifty years and expired on 23 July 2002. Its significance to the EU today is not that great, however, since cooperation has grown over the years to cover much more than just coal and steel.

    What is Greenland’s relationship with the EU?

    Greenland and the Faroe Islands are parts of the Danish Realm. Due to their exceptional position nationally, culturally and geographically these parts of the Realm have an extensive type of self-government.

    Which countries are members of the EU and when did they become members?

    The EU currently consists of the twenty-eight Member States.

    Which countries are net contributors to the EU budget?

    The Commission’s list of net contributions is based on a method which uses the individual countries’ contributions in the form of own resources, such as VAT and GNI, as the basis for the calculations.

    What are the Danish opt-outs from EU co-operation?

    Denmark's opt-outs concern the Monetary Union (EMU), Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP), Justice and Home Affairs (JHA) and the Citizenship of the European Union.

    Which EU referenda have taken place in EU member states?

    Ireland and Denmark have held nine and eight EU referenda and are thus the two countries which have had most referenda on EU issues. Referenda have been held in EU countries on the following issues:

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