Felipe Basabe Lloréns
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Spain
The emergence of a new major actor in the European arena

European integration has clearly produced more benefits than losses for Spain in terms of financial resources and political influence. European Commission (EC) membership has also had a consistent impact on most Spanish public administrations whose procedures and structures have undergone a far-reaching process of adaptation to conform to Community standards. Both Spanish national and regional actors are increasingly taking part in the EC/European Union legislative process and have experienced an extensive process of adaptation of their internal procedures. The increased rights for participation and co-decision have been used intensively by such actors. However, the internal Spanish political situation also clearly interferes with these processes, accelerating or slowing them down: the preference for certain instruments or decision procedures does not exclusively depend on the rhythm of the process of European integration itself. Finally, the increasing role of public opinion should also be taken into account.

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Fifteen into one?

The European Union and its member states

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