International Journal for Muslim World Studies (IJMWS)

Formerly known as International Journal of Muslim Unity (IJMU)

The European Union (EU) lntegration Experiment and its Relevance to Muslim Unity*

El-Fatih A.Abdel Salam

Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, Faculty of Islamic Revealed Knowledge & Human Sciences, International Islamic University Malaysia



This paper explores a powerful International Political Economy theme.’ how can economic cooperation be used as a means to achieve the end of peaceful political cooperation among Muslim nations? The question is important because peaceful cooperation, remains an unfulfilled goal in much of the Muslim world where nationalism and division drive Muslims apart. The answer will tell us whether the market and economics can solve problems that Muslim States and Politics cannot. This paper examines the International Political Economy of the prospective economic integration of the Muslim world by looking at the European Union which is the product of over 40 years of political and economic activity aimed at creating a cooperative and growing environment for Europe. Can the Muslim world use economic policies to solve political problems, thereby paving the way /or the unity of the Ummah? Data on the Muslim world show that this bloc of nations if it were to become politically cohesive, would have the population, resources. economic wealth, technological and actual and potential military strength to be the preeminent power of the twenty-first century



Paper presented at the International Conference on “Muslim Unity in the 21″ Century: Opportunities and challenges,” International Institute for Muslim Unity, IlUM, 1-2 October. Nikko Hotel, KL, Malaysia.