We have found an IELTS reading simulation exercises--Next Year Marks.
Reading Passage 1
You should spend about 20 minutes on Questions 1-14 which are based onReading Passage 1 below.
Next Year Marks the EU's 50th Anniversary of the Treaty
After a period of introversion and stunned self-disbelief, continentalEuropean governments will recover their enthusiasm for pan-Europeaninstitution-building in 2007. Whether the European public will welcome a returnto what voters in two countries had rejected so short a time before is anothermatter.
There are several reasons for Europe’s recovering self-confidence. Foryears European economies had been lagging dismally behind America (to saynothing of Asia), but in 2006 the large continental economies had one of theirbest years for a decade, briefly outstripping America in terms of growth. Sincepolitics often reacts to economic change with a lag, 2006’s improvement ineconomic growth will have its impact in 2007, though the recovery may be ebbingby then.接下来为大家介绍"述说雅思阅读模拟练习：Next Year Marks"
雅思阅读模拟练习：Next Year Marks
The coming year also marks a particular point in a political cycle soregular that it almost seems to amount to a natural law. Every four or fiveyears, European countries take a large stride towards further integration bysigning a new treaty: the Maastricht treaty in 1992, the Treaty of Amsterdam in1997, the Treaty of Nice in 2001. And in 2005 they were supposed to ratify aEuropean constitution, laying the ground for yet more integration—until the calmrhythm was rudely shattered by French and Dutch voters. But the politicalimpetus to sign something every four or five years has only been interrupted,not immobilised, by this setback.
In 2007 the European Union marks the 50th anniversary of another treaty—theTreaty of Rome, its founding charter. Government leaders have already agreed tocelebrate it ceremoniously, restating their commitment to “ever closer union”and the basic ideals of European unity. By itself, and in normal circumstances,the EU’s 50th-birthday greeting to itself would be fairly meaningless, a routineexpression of European good fellowship. But it does not take a Machiavelli tospot that once governments have signed the declaration (and it seems unlikelyanyone would be so uncollegiate as to veto it) they will already be halfwaytowards committing themselves to a new treaty. All that will be necessary willbe to incorporate the 50th-anniversary declaration into a new treaty containinga number of institutional and other reforms extracted from the failed attempt atconstitution-building and—hey presto—a new quasi-constitution will be ready.
According to the German government—which holds the EU’s agenda-settingpresidency during the first half of 2007—there will be a new draft of aslimmed-down constitution ready by the middle of the year, perhaps to put tovoters, perhaps not. There would then be a couple of years in which it will bediscussed, approved by parliaments and, perhaps, put to voters if that is deemedunavoidable. Then, according to bureaucratic planners in Brussels and Berlin,blithely ignoring the possibility of public rejection, the whole thing will besigned, sealed and a new constitution delivered in 2009-10. Europe will benicely back on schedule. Its four-to-five-year cycle of integration will havemissed only one beat.
The resurrection of the European constitution will be made more likely in2007 because of what is happening in national capitals. The European Union isnot really an autonomous organisation. If it functions, it is because theleaders of the big continental countries want it to, reckoning that an activeEuropean policy will help them get done what they want to do in their owncountries.
That did not happen in 2005-06. Defensive, cynical and self-destructive,the leaders of the three largest euro-zone countries—France, Italy andGermany—were stumbling towards their unlamented ends. They saw no reason topursue any sort of European policy and the EU, as a result, barely functioned.But by the middle of 2007 all three will have gone, and this fact alone willtransform the European political landscape.
The upshot is that the politics of the three large continental countries,bureaucratic momentum and the economics of recovery will all be aligned to givea push towards integration in 2007. That does not mean the momentum will beirresistible or even popular. The British government, for one, will almostcertainly not want to go with the flow, beginning yet another chapter in thelong history of confrontation between Britain and the rest of Europe. Moreimportant, the voters will want a say. They rejected the constitution in 2005.It would be foolish to assume they will accept it after 2007 just as a result ofan artful bit of tinkering.
IELTS reading needs more practice.An article,Next Year Marks, is not enough.We hope that the majority of candidates continue to work hard.
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