March 25, 1957
European Economic Community (EEC) and European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) Treaties signed.

April 8, 1965
Treaty merging the institutions of the three European Communities signed.

July 1, 1968
Customs union enters into force. Remaining customs duties in intra-Community trade are abolished 18 months ahead of what was scheduled in the Rome Treaty and the Common Customs Tariff is introduced to replace national customs duties in trade with the rest of the world.

January 1, 1973
Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom join the Community.

February 28, 1975
The Community and the 46 African, Caribbean and Pacific countries (ACP) sign, in Lome, Togo, a Convention, known as Lome I, to replace the Yaounde Conventions.

March 13, 1979
European Monetary System (EMS) becomes operative

January 1, 1981
Greece joins the European Community.

June 29, 1985
European Council endorses "White Paper" plan to complete single market by end 1992.

January 1, 1986
Spain and Portugal join the Community.

July 1, 1987
Single European Act enters into force.

June 26-27, 1989
Madrid European Council endorses plan for Economic and Monetary Union.

October 3, 1990
The five Laender of the former German Democratic Republic enter the Community as part of a united Germany.

October 21, 1991
European Community and European Free Trade Association (EFTA) agree to form the European Economic Area (EEA).

December 11, 1991
A European Council is held in Maastricht, The Netherlands. It reaches an agreement on the draft Treaty on the European Union.

December 16, 1991
Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia sign first Europe Agreements on trade and political cooperation.

January 1, 1993
European single market is achieved on time.

November 1, 1993
Treaty on European Union enters into force after ratification by the member states.

January 1, 1995
Austria, Finland and Sweden join the European Union.

June 17, 1997
The European Council meets in Amsterdam and reaches a consensus on a draft Treaty. It approves various proposals facilitating the smooth passage to the third phase of the Economic and Monetary Union and adopts a resolution on growth and employment.

March 12, 1998
European Conference in London launches Europe-wide consultations on issues related to Common Foreign and Security Policy and Justice and Home Affairs.

March 30-31, 1998
EU opens membership negotiations with Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Poland and Slovenia

May 2, 1998
Eleven EU member states qualify to launch the euro on January 1, 1999.

July 1, 1998
European Central Bank inaugurated in Frankfurt,Germany.

January 1, 1999
EMU and euro launched in eleven EU countries.

September 15, 1999
European Parliament approves new Commission led by Romano Prodi.

June, 2001
Tony Blair, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom defeats his euroskeptic opponents in a landslide election victory.

Jan - July, 2002
The euro will become legal tender and permanently replace national currencies in EMU countries.

December, 2002
European leaders hammered out an agreement to bring 10 new countries into the European Union. Most of the new members will be former Soviet eastern block states.

April, 2003
In Hungary, more than 80% of the voters vote to approved a referendum on EU membership.

June, 2005
France and the Netherlands rejected the EU constitution in separate referendums.