Great Britain and European Integration

The UK has had good relations with the rest of Europe since World War II. It became a member of the European Economic Community in 1973. The EEC eventually became the European Union through the Maastricht Treaty of the European Union in 1993. Although the UK does not use the euro and is not a member of the Eurozone, it still plays a leading role in the day to day workings of the EU.

As a member of the European Union, the United Kingdom could adopt the euro as its currency. However, the subject remains politically controversial. Gordon Brown, when Chancellor of the Exchequer, ruled out membership for the foreseeable future, saying that the decision not to join had been right for Britain and for Europe.

The government of former Prime Minister Tony Blair had pledged to hold a public referendum to decide on membership (should "five economic tests" be met), to ensure that adoption of the euro would be in the national interest. In addition to these internal criteria, the UK would have to meet the EU's economic convergence criteria (Maastricht criteria), before being allowed to adopt the euro. Currently, the UK's annual government deficit, as a percentage of the GDP, is above the defined threshold. In February 2005, 55% of British citizens were against adopting the currency, with 30% in favour. The idea of replacing the pound with the euro has been controversial with the British public, partly because of its identity as a symbol of British sovereignty and because it would, according to critics, lead to suboptimal interest rates, harming the British economy. In December 2008 the results of a BBC poll of 1000 people suggested that 71% would vote "no", 23% would vote "yes" to joining the European single currency, while 6% said they were unsure. The pound did not join the Second European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM II) after the euro was created.

Answer the questions to the text:

1. When did the UK become a member state of the EU?

2. What is the national currency of the country?

3. Why does the government of Great Britain abstain from joining the eurozone?

3. What measures are taken by the government to ensure that adoption of the euro will be beneficial for the country?

4. What is the British public response to the idea of adopting the new currency?

Agree or disagree with the statements.

1. London is the world’s largest financial center with financial services based around three districts.

2. The UK has had an expanding export business in financial service.

3. The City of London is a geographically big city within Greater London.

4. The City is today a major business and financial center.

5. The UK became a member of the European Economic Community in 1983.

6. The UK uses the euro and is a member of the Eurozone.

7. The pound joined the Second European Exchange Rate Mechanism.


1. Match up the words on the left with their definitions on the right:

expense a) a place where securities are regularly traded

constituency b) a part or portion of something owned

responsible c) a person or group of people having the power or right to

legislate control, judge, or prohibit the actions of others

futures d) to make or pass laws

competitive e) a formal agreement or contract between two or more parties

stock exchange f) the whole body of voters who elect one representative to a

revenue legislature or all the residents represented by one deputy

authority g) being accountable for one's actions and decisions (to)

share h) income from a business enterprise, investment, property, etc

treaty i) a particular payment of money

j) sufficiently low in price or high in quality to be successful

against commercial rivals

k) commodities or other financial products bought or sold at an

agreed price for delivery at a specified future date

2. Complete the table with the derivatives of the given words.

Agent Noun Verb Adjective

3. Insert the following words to complete the sentences: taxation, labour force, estimate, launch, consumption, output, headquarters, commodity, contractor, bond.

1) Ethiopia has almost the lowest oil ____________ per capita in the world.

2) The builders _______________ the cost of repairing the roof at $600.

3) Foreign workers now compose 6% of the company's_______________.

4) The ______________ of the company is located in Switzerland.

5) A person or firm that supplies materials or labour, esp. for building is known as a _______________.

6) The industrial ___________ is up 30% on last year.

7) Labour is bought and sold like any other ____________.

8) Eurobond is a _______________ issued in a eurocurrency.

9) In recent years, the UK economy has been managed in accordance with the principles of market liberalization, low _____________ and regulation.

10) Great Britain is expected to ____________ the building of new nuclear reactors to replace existing generators and to boost UK's energy reserves.

4. Match up the words from the left column with the words from the right one to make common collocations.

interest sector
domestic workforce
tertiary euro
stock authority
skilled goods
join energy
adopt currency
single euro zone
legislative rate
renewable exchange

5. Insert the appropriate prepositions where necessary.

1) It’ll allow the UK to be self-sufficient ____ coal for just over 6.5 years, although _____ present extraction rates it would take 20 years to mine.

2) The UK economy is the world's sixth largest ___ nominal GDP and the seventh largest ___ purchasing power parity.

3) Manufacturing remains a significant part of the economy, but accounts ____ only one-sixth of national output.

4) The service sector has grown substantially, and now makes ____ about 73% of GDP.

5) Agriculture is intensive, highly mechanised, and efficient ____ European standards, producing about 60% ____ food needs ____ less than 2% ___ the labour force.

6) However, following the severe shock of the 1973 oil crisis and the 1973–1974 stock market crash, the British economy went _____ recession in 1974.

7) According ____ the IMF, GDP rose ___ 5% ___ its peak in 1988.

8) In 2008 the United Kingdom entered ____ a recession brought ____ _____ the global financial crisis.

9) The City of London is often referred ____ as the City or the Square Mile, as it is just over one square mile ___ area.

10) The City is a major business and financial centre, ranking ____ a par ___ New York City as the leading centre of global finance.


1. Choose the correct form of the predicates in brackets.

1. Mr.Blake worked without a contract which (prevented/had prevented) him from receiving a golden parachute pay.

2. Mr. Kay figured that Rolls-Royce’s prices (left/had left) plenty of room for low-price competitors.

3. Mr. Smith said that much of the apparent growth in profits that (occurred/had occurred) in the 80s (was/had been) the result of creative accounting.

4. Cray Research Inc reported surprisingly weak results for the second quarter which (indicated/had indicated) lower earnings for the year.

5. Dunhill was sitting on a share capital of £179 mln last year, then it (shrank/had shrunk) to £120 mln due to standings in Europe.

6. Pittard’s share price tumbled when the price of sheepskins (collapsed/had collapsed)

7. Howard Klein said that the fall in the Airtours share price(raised/had raised) serious concerns.

2. Complete the sentences using the verbs in brackets in proper tense form (the Past Simple or the Past Perfect)

1. I couldn’t get into the office because I (to lose) my key.

2. We couldn’t use that logotype, because one of our competitors already (to choose) it.

3. I found about the vacancy too late. When my application form arrived, they (to appoint) another person.

4. By the time he sold off the shares, his original investment (to fall) by 13 per cent.

5. When I returned to the firm, I was surprised to hear that the boss (to put) my colleague in charge of the project.

6. The bank returned the cheque because I (not to sign) it.

7. The office was empty because everybody (to go) home.

3. Complete the sentences using the verbs in brackets in proper tense form.

1. Managers in British companies needed to understand that they (to deal) with human beings and not machines.

2. They said that the UK business people (to lose) their way and the things (to go) downhill fast.

3. Many people claimed that Japanese companies (to make) products cheaper and better quality than UK ones.

4. Frank Farrant, a finance director, said the first task (to be) to increase Adidas’ profitability into about 10 per cent in two or three year’s time.

5. I wondered how much the model (to cost).

6. His colleagues knew the real reason for Sloan’s success: he (to be) a man who always (to put) business first.

7. LBS Ltd. researchers believed deregulation and technological advance (to add) to the concentration of the three main financial centers: London, New York and Tokyo.


Text 1

The United Kingdom or Great Britain?

How was the United Kingdom Formed?

The Union Jack

Task 1.Listen to the text and learn the new words and phrases. Insert the words or phrases from the frame.

in general armed struggle abbreviated united diagonal refer were united union made up of complicated crosses upright inherited the crown

1. “The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is …………to “UK”.

2. Great Britain is an island which is …….. England, Scotland and Wales.

3. We use “the United Kingdom” when we ….. to the country in a political way.

4. People from Great Britain, the United Kingdom and the British Isles are called “British” …..

5. The formation of the UK took centuries and a lot of ….. was involved.

6. King Henry VIII …. England and Wales under one parliament in 1536.

7. The King of Scotland ….. of England and Wales in 1603.

8. The Parliaments of England, Wales and Scotland ….. in 1707.

9. The story of this particular ….. of the United Kingdom is long and ……

10. The flag of the United Kingdom is made up of three ….

11. The ….. red cross is the cross of St. George.

12. The white … cross is the cross of St. Andrew.

2. Fill in the necessary prepositions.

1. The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Island is abbreviated ……“UK”.

2. “The British” are people living in any part of the United Kingdom ….. general.

3. The parliaments of England, Wales ad Scotland were united …. 1707.

4. The whole …. Ireland was untied …. Great Britain ….. 1922.

5. The United Kingdom is the name to use if you refer … the country …. a political way.

Task 3. Write down the English equivalents.

1.образован из ….

2. покровитель Англии…

3. в политическом аспекте…

4. в географическом аспекте…

5. унаследовал корону…

6. ссылаться

Text 2

The government of the UK

The parliamentary parties

Task 1.Listen to the text. Learn new words and phrases. Find and mark the corresponding endings.

1. The United Kingdom is a constitutional Monarchy and ……the Cabinet and the ministers

2. Royal power are very…………………………………..… Labour Party

3. Executive power is wielded ……………………………… by the Prime Minister

4. The Prime Minister is the leader of the …………………. majority party in Parliament

5. The Prime Minister appoints …………………………… a parliamentary democracy

6. Legislative power is vested …. ………the monarch, the House of Lords and the House of Commons.

7. The Parliament consists of …. …………………… …….in the Parliament

8. The House of Lords is … ………………………… …honorific and traditional.

9. The House of Commons is …………………………. elections at any time.

10. The House of Commons is elected to ………… …… the Conservative and Liberal parties

11. The Prime Minister can call general ……………… .. elected.

12. The oldest parties in the United Kingdom are ……….. five-year terms

13. In 1945 Britain had its first …… ……………………..hereditary and appointive.

Task 2.Quiz. Answer the questions.

1. What’s the abbreviation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland?

2. What parts is the United Kingdom made up of?

3. What parts is Great Britain made up of?

4. Are all the isles off the British coast part the United Kingdom?

5. How are the people from the British Isles called?

6. When were the parliaments of England, Wales and Scotland united?

7. Which part of Ireland belongs to the UK?

8. What kind of political system is there in the UK?

9. Who is the permanent heard of state?

10. By whom is the executive power of the UK wielded?

11. Where is legislative power vested?

12. Which body is elected: the House of Lords or the House of Commons?

13. Which are the oldest parties in the UK?

14. When did the UK have its first Labour Government?


Working with economic information, analyzing trends of economic development economists are often faced with the task of presenting data in the form of tables. They must be skilful in interpreting table data, able to describe it and discuss with colleagues.

To refer to a table the following phrases may be used:

As can be seen from the table, …
According to Table 1, …
As (is) shown in Table 2, …
It can be seen from the table, that …
From the table it can be   concluded that…
table 3 may be estimated

1. Using the above phrases, describe the information about Gordon Brown given in Table 1.

Table 1

Great Britain and European Integration - DAVID CAMERON (DAVID WILLIAM DONALD CAMERON)
1. Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
Assumed office11 May 2010
Preceded by Gordon Brown
2. First Lord of the Treasury
3. Minister of the Civil Service
4. Leader of the Conservative Party Assumed officeDecember 2005  
Born 9 October 1966 Oxfordshire, United Kingdom
Spouse Samantha Cameron
Children Ivan (Deceased) Nancy Elwen Florence
Residence 10 Downing Street (Official)
Alma mater Oxford University (Philosophy, Politics, Economics)
Degrees First class honours degree
Religion Church of England
Signature Great Britain and European Integration -

2. Make up a similar table filling it in with data about other well-known people of the UK. Get prepared to describe it to the group.

3. Give a brief sketch of the UK’s major political parties making use of the following table.

Table 2

Labour Party
Leader Ed Miliband
Headquarters 39 Victoria Street, London
Ideology Democratic socialism, Social democracy, Third Way
Official colours Red
Conservative Party
Leader David Cameron
Founded Historical 1678, Modern 1912
Headquarters 30 Millbank, London
Ideology Traditionalist conservatism, British unionism Liberal conservatism Thatcherism Euroscepticism
Official colours Blue
Liberal Democrats
Leader Nick Clegg
Founded 3 March 1988
Headquarters 4 Cowley Street, London,
Ideology Social and market liberalism Social democracy Enviromentalism
Official colours Yellow

4. Say it in English:

4/5, 2/3, 1/2, 3/7 тонны, 1/4 километра, 2/3 процента, 1 ½ часа, 1/2 доллара, 4 ½ евро, 2 ¾ процента, 2 2/3 дюйма, 0.105 метра, 2.18 фута, 17.562 тонны, 5 процентов, 23 процента, 0.36 процента, 2.5 процента, 2,674 миллиона рублей, тысячи людей, сотни автомобилей, 0.97 триллионов долларов, 3/8 процента, ½ процента, 0.5 процента.

5. Table 3 describes the economy of Great Britain in terms of main economic indicators. Look at the information and then get prepared to describe it drawing attention to the most significant items.

Table 3

Economy of the United Kingdom
Currency Pound sterling (GBP)
Trade organisations EU, BCN, OECD and WTO
GDP $2,674 billion (2008 est. nom.)
GDP per capita $43,785 (2008 est. nom.) (20th)
GDP by sector agriculture (1%), industry (23%), services (76%) (2008 est.)
Inflation 1.8% (July 2009)
Population below poverty line 14% with household income below 60% of UK median income (2006 est.)
Labour force 31 million (includes unemployed) (2007 est.)
Labour force by occupation Services (81%), industry (18%) and agriculture (1%) (excludes unemployed) (2007)
Unemployment 7.5%
Main industries machine tools, industrial equipment, scientific equipment, shipbuilding, aircraft, motor vehicles and parts, electronic machinery, computers, processed metals, chemical products, coal mining, oil production, paper, food processing, textiles, clothing and other consumer goods.
Exports $442.2 billion (2007 est.)
Main export partners USA 15%, Germany 11%, France 10%, Ireland 7%, Netherlands 6%, Belgium 6%, Spain 5%, Italy 4% (2007)
Imports $621.4 billion (2007 est.)
Main import partners Germany 14.2%, US 8.6%, China 7.3%, Netherlands 7.3%, France 6.9%, Belgium 4.7%, Norway 4.7%, Italy 4.2% (2007)
Public finances
Public debt $864 billion (2007)
Revenues $0.97 trillion (2007)
Expenses $1.04 trillion (2007)
Economic aid $8 billion (donor)
Main data source: CIA World Fact Book All values, unless otherwise stated, are in US dollars

Task 4. Draw a similar table for your own country. Get prepared to describe it to an audience.


Task 1. Read the following quotations about the economy and explain in your own words what you think the authors meant. Say whether you agree or disagree with them and give your arguments.

1. In the new economy, information, education, and motivation are everything.
Bill Clinton

2. If we only have great companies, we will merely have a prosperous society, not a great one. Economic growth and power are the means, not the definition, of a great nation.
Jim Collins

3.Education is both a tool of social justice as well as a fundamental driver of economic development.

Kevin Rudd

4. Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidise it.
Ronald Reagan

5. In the end it may well be that Britain will be honoured by historians more for the way she disposed of an empire than for the way in which she acquired it.
Lord Harlech


Write an essay of at least 500 words making a short-range forecast of the nearest economic trends in the UK.


The economic geography of the UK reflects not only its current position in the global economy, but its long history both as a trading nation and an imperial power.

The UK led the industrial revolution and its highly urban character is a legacy of this, with all its major cities being current or former centers of all forms of manufacturing. However, this in turn was built on its exploitation of natural resources, especially coal and iron ore.

The UK's primary industry was once dominated by the coal industry, heavily concentrated in the north, the Midlands and south Wales. This is all but gone and the major primary industry is North Sea oil. Its activity is concentrated on the UK Continental Shelf to the north-east of Scotland.

The UK's heavy manufacturing drove the industrial revolution. A map of the major UK cities gives a good picture of where this activity occurred, in particular Belfast, Birmingham, Glasgow, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham.

Today there is no heavy manufacturing industry in which UK-based firms can be considered world leaders. However, the Midlands in particular remains a strong manufacturing centre.

More recently, high technology firms have concentrated largely along the M4 motorway, partly because of access to Heathrow Airport, but also because of agglomeration economies.

Finance and services.Once, every large city had a stock exchange. Now, the UK financial industry is concentrated overwhelmingly in the City of London and Canary Wharf, with back office and administrative operations often dispersed around the south of England. London is one of the world's greatest financial centers and is usually referred to as a world city.

Regional disparity.The combined effect of changing economic fortune has created the so-called North-South divide, in which decaying industrial areas of the north of England contrast with the wealthy, finance and technology led southern economy. This has led successive governments to develop regional policy to try to rectify the imbalance.

James Gordon Brown (born 20 February 1951) is the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Labour Party. Brown became Prime Minister in June 2007, after the resignation of Tony Blair and three days after becoming leader of the governing Labour Party. Immediately before this he had served as Chancellor of the Exchequer in the Labour government from 1997 to 2007 under Tony Blair.

Brown has a PhD in history from the University of Edinburgh and spent his early career working as a television journalist. He has been a Member of Parliament since 1983. As Prime Minister, he also holds the offices of First Lord of the Treasury and the Minister for the Civil Service.

Brown's time as Chancellor was marked by major reform of Britain's monetary and fiscal policy architecture, transferring interest rate setting powers to the Bank of England, by a wide extension of the powers of the Treasury to cover much domestic policy and by transferring responsibility for banking supervision to the Financial Services Authority. Controversial moves included the abolition of Advance Corporation Tax (ACT) relief in his first budget, and the removal in his final budget of the 10 per cent "starting rate" of personal income tax which he had introduced in 1999.

After an initial rise in opinion polls, Brown's time as Prime Minister has seen his approval ratings fall and the Labour Party suffer its worst local election results in 40 years. Despite public and parliamentary pressure on his leadership, he remains leader of the Labour Party.

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