With so many countries making up the European Union, there are many needs to cater for in order to keep everyone satisfied. However, there are some issues that will affect all of the member countries – or the majority – which is where the focus should lie in terms of the priority over the next five years.

Looking at the European Union as it is today is the best way to determine where it should head over the next five years. In my opinion, the key word in this respect is ‘finance’. Most if not all of the countries that make up the European Union have some type of financial issues, to varying degrees of severity.

Even those countries that do not have severe problems cannot become complacent, as this does not mean that problems cannot arise at a later stage. In addition to this, as part of the European Community, poor finances of some countries will have the effect of dragging down the finances and reputations of countries that had no issue.

Improving the finances of the member countries is essential, as is increasing employment and taking people out of poverty. The large divide between rich and poor that is evident in many of the European Union countries should also be reduced as this causes much resentment in members of the public, which can lead to unrest. However, this goes hand in hand with improving the country’s finances.

Getting out of the austerity period that has plagued most of the member countries of the European Union should be a high priority. Even if matters do not become perfect, taking some action that will result in an improvement that will be worthwhile in the long run.

Unifying the countries of the European Union should also be a priority so that there is not so much in-fighting between the member states. While citizens of the member countries cannot carbon copies of each other, there must be a way to make the way the countries are run more similar to each other. For example, issues such as retirement age, the criminal justice system and immigration are vastly different depending on what European country being referred to. I am sure that – with some cooperation – these types of issues could be more aligned throughout Europe.