The Major Government Pt 2

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  • The Major Government
    • Europe and the ERM
      • Feb 1992  Maastricht Treaty signed
      • ERM - interest rose 10%-15% & BoE sold £30bn to keep the £ stable.
        • 16th Sept 1992 'Black Wednesday'
          • Britain withdrew from ERM
      • consequences
        • B's case for closer integration damaged
        • Eurosceptics arguments strengthened
        • Cons. reputation for financial responsibility damaged
        • Lab. gained 15% lead in opinion polls
      • long term
        • economy boomed
        • Europe dividing Cons.
          • July 1993 organised resistance to Maas. Treaty by Eurorebels defeated bill necessary to ratify treaty
            • Major forced through by introducing it as a proposal in part of formal vote of confidence in his govt.
    • Economic Growth
      • economy picked up after leaving ERM
      • beginning of Britain's longest period of continuous economic growth
      • end of recession declare April 1993
      • unemployment fell from 3m to 2m by 1996
      • British economy outperformed the rest of Europe for the first time in a generation
    • The IRA
      • began work engaging with the IRA to work towards a peaceful end to the conflict
      • his work there led the way for the Good Friday Agreement in 1998
    • The Gulf War
      • Major made an impressive debut during the war in which his conduct was statesmanlike over the crisis in Kuwait
      • Major's decision to keep the opposition leaders (Kinnock & Ashdown) informed on the key moves in the Gulf war won him considerable respect at home

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