What was the situation in Europe after the Second World War?


After the Second World War had killed 40 million people and 35 million had been wounded , most of them in theUSSR , Poland , Germany and Yugoslavia , but the population did not decline because the number of births exceeded that of deaths . At the end there were 15 million displaced persons seeking to return to their place of origin.

In Europe countries lost much of its industrial capacity and infrastructure . The agricultural production was alsoaffected with declines in almost all countries and a large number of houses had been destroyed .

In addition to the lack of food, raw materials and energy Europeans lacked means of payment with which toimport,  and monetary and debt problems by war exacerbated the problem.

However they exist a number of factors that promoted a European reconstruction after the war: not the entire production was destroyed in the war ; the interest of the United States (US) in the reconstruction of Europe ;He had strengthened the idea of the necessary cooperation between European states for recovery; and it emerged a new sense of supranationality .

During the 40s were being created different European movements betting on integration and European cooperation: the Union of European Federalists , 1946; European Movement , 1947; “Ligue Européenne Cooperation Economique” , 1948; the Council of Europe , 1949.

However the signing of defensive military alliances in Europe, which led to the creation of NATO, endangered integration processes in Europe to marginalize those countries who wanted to remain neutral or non – aligned .

Although the United States have sent 25,000 million dollars in economic aid from 1945 to 1948 , this assistance was sold out early and did not help the economic recovery of Europe . In 1947 , the US secretary of state, George C. Marshall , raised the need to send aid to Europe for economic recovery tied to Europe would make oneinventory of their resources and develop a common plan of economic recovery that would lead to the formation of a large European market. To achieve the objectives had three ways : common economic recovery program ,customs union and trade liberalization .

At the end of the three ways the third way that led to the creation of the was chosen European Organisation for Economic Cooperation (OEEC), this organization got an agreement on the allocation of funds provided by theUS but did not get that would remember one joint development plan and stayed in some general principles :monetary stability , stimulate exports , reducing imports , modernize infrastructure and production and reduce European imbalances .


In the late 40 different developed projects customs unions : Francital (between France and Italy ), the Benelux (Belgium , Netherlands and Luxembourg ), Finebel (Among the countries Francital and Benelux ), Uniscan ( UK ,Denmark , Norway and Sweden ) and the Nordic Council (between the Scandinavian countries ).

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