The majority of Europeans are optimistic as to the future of EU

The majority of Europeans are optimistic as to the future of EU
Trust in the EU is also increasing, reaching 42%, compared to 36% in autumn 2016 and 32% in autumn 2015.© Belga

The majority of Europeans (56%) are optimistic as to the future of EU, or an increase of six percentage points, compared to autumn 2016. This emerges from a Eurobarometer report, published on Wednesday by the European Commission.

The most significant increases were seen in France (55%, up 14 points since last autumn), Denmark (70%, up 13 points) and Portugal (64%, up 10 points). In Belgium, 63% (an increase of 7 points) of those surveyed say they are “optimistic” as to the future of the Union.

Trust within the EU is also increasing, with a view to reaching 42%, compared to 36% in autumn 2016 and 32% in autumn 2015. This has particularly increased in France (41%, up 15 points), Denmark (56%, up 11 points) and in Estonia (55%, up 11 points). That said, trust in the Union declined by two points in Belgium to reach 46%.

Terrorism is now top of the issues quoted by EU citizens as amongst the challenges which the EU must currently face (44%, up 12 percentage points since autumn 2016). Immigration, which has been the main concern since spring 2015, is henceforth the second most frequently cited challenge (38%, down 7 points).

These concerns are way ahead of those linked to the economic situation (18%, -2 points), the state of the public finances of member states (17%, unchanged) and unemployment (15%, down 1 point).

The spring 2017 Eurobarometer survey was compiled by face-to-face interviews conducted between 20th and 30th May. In this period a total of 33,180 people were interviewed across the EU member states and in the accession countries.


The Brussels Times


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