Glossary:European Union (EU)

The European Union, abbreviated as EU, is an economic and political union of European countries. The EU was established on 1 November 1993 by the Treaty on European Union (Maastricht Treaty).

On 31 December 1994, the EU had 12 Member States: Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and the United Kingdom.

From January 1995, the EU added three Member States: Austria, Finland and Sweden.

In May 2004, 10 more countries joined the EU: Cyprus, Czechia, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovenia and Slovakia. On 1 January 2007, Bulgaria and Romania became members of the EU. The latest country to accede was Croatia, on 1 July 2013.

The EU has a surface area of 4 413 844 km², 505 701 172 inhabitants (January 2013, provisional) and 24 official languages. The EU Member States are as follows (alphabetical order, first row down, then second row down, etc.):

Austria (AT) Estonia (EE) Italy (IT) Portugal (PT)
Belgium (BE) Finland (FI) Latvia (LV) Romania (RO)
Bulgaria (BG) France (FR) Lithuania (LT) Slovakia (SK)
Croatia (HR) Germany (DE) Luxembourg (LU) Slovenia (SI)
Cyprus (CY) Greece (EL) Malta (MT) Spain (ES)
Czechia (CZ) Hungary (HU) Netherlands (NL) Sweden (SE)
Denmark (DK) Ireland (IE) Poland (PL) United Kingdom (UK)

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