Germany and Ireland’s application to the EEC, 1961– 63
in Ireland, West Germany and the New Europe, 1949– 73
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West Germany was initially sceptical and divided about Ireland's suitability on economic and political grounds. The internal differences of opinion persisted until October 1962 when the European Economic Community (EEC) finally granted Ireland permission to begin entry negotiations. Realising an Irish application to join the EEC could trigger bewilderment in European circles, which were not anticipating such a move by an economy that had shown little interest in integration until recently, Dublin calculated it should prepare them. During the 1955 and 1956 EEC foundation discussions, Professor Ludwig Erhard and his ministry were 'strongly market oriented' and favoured a pan-European free-trade system as part of the Organisation for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC). This prompted Konrad Adenauer to intervene decisively in the internal German deliberations.

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