The European Union is the economic and political union of 27 Member States. Together, the EU has built a zone of stability, democracy and sustainable development, while maintaining cultural diversity, tolerance and individual freedom. In 2012, the EU was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for advancing the goals of peace, reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe. The EU is the world's largest trading bloc and the world's largest source and destination of foreign direct investment. Collectively, the EU and its Member States are the largest donors of Official Development Assistance (ODA), providing more than half of ODA globally. The European Commission is the EU's politically independent executive arm. It promotes the general interest of the EU by proposing and enforcing legislation as well as by implementing policies and the EU budget. It represents the EU internationally.