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Trust in EU at its highest in five years, new poll shows

FILE PHOTO: Anti-Brexit March in London, 20 July 2019
FILE PHOTO: Anti-Brexit March in London, 20 July 2019 Copyright REUTERS\Kevin Coombs
Copyright REUTERS\Kevin Coombs
By Euronews
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From the economy to democracy, Europeans are upbeat about the state of the EU, according to a new Eurobarometer survey released on Monday.


From the economy to democracy, Europeans are feeling upbeat about the state of the EU, according to a new Eurobarometer survey.

At 44%, trust in the EU is at its highest level since 2014 and 10% ahead of trust in national governments and parliaments, it showed.


Among other key findings was the fact that 61% of Europeans are optimistic about the future of the EU.

Meanwhile, 55% of Europeans said they are satisfied with the way democracy works in the bloc — the highest score since 2004.

Support for the euro area reached a record high of 76%.


"Overall, the EU is seen in a more positive light than at any time over the past ten years," Eurobarometer said in its report.

Speaking to Euronews, researcher Louise Hoon said the Brexit referendum played a role in the current spike in "Euro-optimism".

"It's something that has been going on since 2014, 2`0`15, and especially after the Brexit referendum, we really see that with a few exceptions, trust and support for membership are going up."

For the first time, climate change became the second top concern for European citizens, right after immigration, the EU agency noted.

Emmanuel Rivière, CEO of the French-branch of global consulting company Kantar Public said that a change in attitude could also be attributed to leaving behind the tough crisis years the EU faced, first with the 2008 financial crisis and second with the 2015 migrant crisis. 

"In both cases, divisions between member states were apparent and that was detrimental to the image of the institution.

"This memory is fading, and in the last period, apart from the friction still on the migration issue but less strong than last summer, the EU has rather shown its ability to act as a common front, particularly on Brexit."

Rivière also noted that with all the different geopolitical tensions in the world right now, the EU seemed like a "haven of stability".

But not all countries were equally upbeat about the EU.


"Optimism is highest in Ireland (85%), Denmark (79%), Lithuania (76%) and Poland (74%)," Eurobarometer said.

"At the other end of the scale, optimism is less pronounced in the United Kingdom (47% vs 46%) and in France (50% vs 45%)."

"In these countries, there are lovers and haters," Hoon said, also including Greece and Italy in her analysis.

The survey was conducted after this year's European elections through face-to-face interviews between 7 June and 1 July 2019 across the 28 EU Member States and in the candidate countries.

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