France, Italy and the Benelux countries reacted positively to Robert
Schuman’s plan and the Foreign Ministers of those countries
entered into negotiations based on the principles set in the Plan.
The Institutional issues were the first to be addressed. The Benelux
countries demanded a truly independent High Authority fearing the
dominant Franco-German axis. The Minsters resolved the economic
issues particularly the dismantling of the heavy industry cartels
in the Ruhr and the political questions such as the seat of the
High Authority and its composition.
1950-51 Intergovernmental Conference was the founding moment in the Union's
history. The IGC, which began in May 1950 and ended with the signing of
the Treaty on 18 April 1951, brought together France, Germany, Italy and
the Benelux countries under the chairmanship of Jean Monnet. Other participants
included Walter Hallstein, who led the German delegation and was subsequently
President of the Commission, and for the Dutch delegation, Dirk Spierenberg,
later a prominent public servant in European affairs.(Note:
this description has been adapted from a page
on the Europa Server)
DOCUMENTS AND MATERIAL*
Hallstein, W., Standpunkt
der deutschen Bundesregierung, in: Kosthorst, D; Haftendorn,
H. (ed al), Akten zur Auswärtigen Politik der Bundesrepublik
Deutschland, 1949/50. September 1949 bis Dezember 1950. München:
Oldenbourg, 1997, pp.225-229.(3. Juli 1950)
House of Commons, Parliamentary
debates regarding the absence of the United Kingdom from the negotiating
on Schuman Plan, 27.06.1950, Parliamentary Debates. 1950, n°
476; fifth series, pp.2106-2112; 2142-2148; 2151-2159.
Declaration of the Ministers signatory to the Treaty establishing
the European Coal and Steel Pool, 18.04.1951, Historical archives
of the Council of Europe, Strasbourg. ECSC-CE, Vol 1, Exchange of
information and publicity, 24215.
Schuman, R., Speech
at the Council of Europe, 10.08.1950, Council of Europe, Reports,
Second session, 7th-28th August 1950, Part I, Sittings 1 to 12.
Tome, I (1986), The
Schuman Plan, the Council of Europe and Western European Integration
May 1950 - December 1952, in Bullen, R.; Pelly, M.E.(coor.),
Documents on British Policy Overseas, Series II. London: Her Majesty's
Stationery Office, 1986. - pp. 137-138.
*The material has been reproduced from the European NAvigator
developed by CVCE – Centre Virtuel de la Connaissance sur l’Europe