Regions of Europe

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Europe is often divided into regions based on geographical, cultural or historical criteria. Many European structures currently exist, some are cultural, economic, or political - examples include the Council of Europe, the European Broadcasting Union with the Eurovision Song Contest, and the European Olympic Committees with the European Games. Several transcontinental countries which border mainland Europe, are often included as belonging to a "wider Europe" including, Russia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Cyprus, Armenia, Greenland, as well as the Special member state territories and the European Union.

Geographical boundaries

Groupings by compass directions are the hardest to define in Europe, since there are a few calculations of the midpoint of Europe (among other issues), and the pure geographical criteria of "east" and "west" are often confused with the political meaning these words acquired during the Cold War Era.

The modern physical geographic regions of Europe, include:

Historical divisions

Europe can be divided along many differing historical lines, normally corresponding to those parts that were inside or outside a particular cultural phenomenon, empire or political division. The areas varied at different times, and so it is arguable as to which were part of some common historical entity (e.g., were Germany or Britain part of Roman Europe as they were only partly and relatively briefly part of the Empire—or were the countries of the former communist Yugoslavia part of the Eastern Bloc, since it was not in the Warsaw Pact).

Contemporary

Council of Europe Schengen Area European Free Trade Association European Economic Area Eurozone European Union European Union Customs Union Agreement with EU to mint euros GUAM Central European Free Trade Agreement Nordic Council Baltic Assembly Benelux Visegrád Group Common Travel Area Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Union State Switzerland Iceland Norway Liechtenstein Sweden Denmark Finland Poland Czech Republic Hungary Slovakia Greece Estonia Latvia Lithuania Belgium Netherlands Luxembourg Italy France Spain Austria Germany Portugal Slovenia Malta Cyprus Ireland United Kingdom Croatia Romania Bulgaria Turkey Monaco Andorra San Marino Vatican City Georgia Ukraine Azerbaijan Moldova Armenia Russia Belarus Serbia Albania Montenegro Macedonia Bosnia and Herzegovina Kosovo (UNMIK)
A clickable Euler diagram showing the relationships between various multinational European organisations and agreements.

Economic and political

European Single Market integration:     European Union member states form the European Single Market     Non-EU states that participate in the EU Single Market with exceptions: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland (see also EFTA)     Non-EU states with a Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU allowing for participation in selected sectors of the Single Market: EU accession candidates Albania, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia; EU accession potential candidates: Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo     Non-EU states with a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area agreement with the EU allowing for participation in selected sectors of the Single Market: Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine     Non-EU states which have a bilateral Customs Union arrangement with the EU: Turkey (an accession candidate), Andorra and San Marino
Countries that are a part of the political and economic bloc (28 members as of 2017):
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.
Countries that have adopted the Euro as their currency:
Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Spain.
A free trade organisation that operates in parallel with – and is linked to – the EU:
Liechtenstein, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland.
A free trade agreement among non-EU members:
Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Kosovo (represented by UNMIK) and Serbia.
A borderless zone created by the Schengen Agreements, including:
Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Norway, Iceland and Switzerland, which by separate agreements fully apply the provisions of the Schengen acquis.
A customs union of all the member states of the European Union (EU) and some neighbouring countries
Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and the UK.
Is a political and economic union of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Russia. Moldova holds observer status.
Is free trade agreement among the members of the Commonwealth of Independent States: Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Moldova and Armenia.
A forum of regional economic cooperation:
Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Turkey, and Ukraine

Other political

Members of the Eastern Partnership
A group of former Soviet Eastern European countries cooperating with the EU:
Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine.
  • OECD Europe countries
European countries that are a part of the OECD:
Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United Kingdom.
A forum of regional cooperation including:
Albania, Austria, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and Ukraine
A military and political alliance between Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and observer states of Afghanistan and Serbia.
A group of former Soviet disputed states in Eastern Europe:
Abkhazia, Republic of Artsakh, South Ossetia, and Transnistria.
An international organisation whose stated aim is to uphold human rights, democracy, rule of law in Europe and to promote European culture.
It has 47 member states, with approximately 820 million people.
The world's largest security-oriented intergovernmental organization, with 57 participating states mostly in Europe and the Northern Hemisphere.
A cultural and political alliance of four Central European states for the purposes of furthering their European integration, as well as for advancing military, economic and energy cooperation with one another:
Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Hungary.
An Interreg IIIA project to establish a multinational region in the Central Europe encompassing four European countries: Slovakia, Austria, Hungary and the Czech Republic.
Promotes Central European cooperation.

Geographical

Peninsulas

The Balkan peninsula is located in southeast Europe and the following countries occupy land within the Balkan either exclusively or partially:
Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia (approximately one half), Greece, Kosovo[a], Republic of Macedonia, Italy (part of Friuli), Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia (coastal section) and Turkey (East Thrace)
Located in southwestern Europe this peninsula contains Spain, Portugal, Gibraltar, and Andorra
Located in the south of Europe, the Italian peninsula contains the states of Italy, San Marino and the Vatican City
Located in the north of Europe, Norway, Sweden and part of Finland.
Located in the north of Europe, Norway, Sweden, Finland and part of Russia.
Jutland, main part of Denmark excluding its islands; Schleswig-Holstein region of Germany.

Regional

Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Finland, Germany, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, Sweden.
Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, parts of France, parts of Germany
The United Kingdom, the Isle of Man, and the Republic of Ireland
Romania, Hungary, Ukraine, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Poland, Serbia
Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Russia; also the disputed territories of Abkhazia, Republic of Artsakh and South Ossetia
Guernsey, Jersey
Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Greenland, and Iceland
States that occupy the Alps:
Austria, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Slovenia, Germany, France, and Italy.
States that lie along the River Danube:
Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Moldova, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, and Ukraine.
Overlaps with Southeastern Europe:
Bulgaria, Greece, Albania, Kosovo[a], Republic of Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro.
Countries occupying land on and off the Balkan are Romania, Serbia, Croatia and Slovenia.
Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Albania.
Serbia, Kosovo[a] and Italy occupy a small portion of the Dinaric Alps.
Chain of Islands in the North Atlantic
Azores, Canary Islands, Madeira; also including Cape Verde, an independent African nation .
Mediterranean nations are European countries on the Mediterranean Basin:
Portugal, Spain, France, Monaco, Italy, Slovenia, San Marino, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Albania, Greece, Turkey, Cyprus, Malta and the British territory of Gibraltar
The Panonnian nations are:
Hungary, Romania, Serbia, Croatia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Austria, Ukraine
The Black Sea nations (although some sections lie within Asia) are:
Abkhazia (disputed territory), Georgia, Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Russia
The world's largest lake which forms a section of the Asian-European border has five countries occupying its shore. Turkmenistan and Iran lie entirely within Asia while the following countries are transcontinental and have sovereignty over the Caspian Sea's European sector:
Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan

Religious groupings

Catholic majority countries, including Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Croatia, the Czech Republic, France, South and Western Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, parts of Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Southern Netherlands Poland, Portugal, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain.
Orthodox majority countries, including Armenia, Belarus, North and Eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Georgia, Greece, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Republic of Artsakh (disputed territory), Romania, Russia, Serbia, Ukraine.
Protestant majority countries, including Denmark, Estonia, Greenland, Finland, North and Eastern Germany, Iceland, parts of Latvia, Northern Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, United Kingdom
Muslim majority countries, including Albania, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo[a], Turkey, Northern Cyprus (disputed territory)

Other groupings

Describing the concentration of the wealth/economic productivity of Europe in a banana-shaped band running from north west England, London, through Benelux, eastern France, western Germany to northern Italy.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b c d Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia. The Republic of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. The two governments began to normalise relations in 2013, as part of the Brussels Agreement. Kosovo has received formal recognition as an independent state from 113 out of 193 United Nations member states, of which several have been revoked.
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