With the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, nearly two out of three Europeans (65%) today look favorably on their country’s membership of the European Union. This is what emerges from the Eurobarometer survey, conducted from 19 April to 16 May on 26,578 respondents in the 27 EU countries. This is, underlines the European Parliament, the highest result since 2007, the year before the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers, when the figure stood at 58%. Membership is seen as “a good thing” by the relative majority of citizens in all countries, with the exception of Greece and Slovakia, where more respondents consider it “neither a good nor a bad thing”. Compared to the last Parlameter survey at the end of last year, the results have increased significantly in most countries, notably Lithuania, Malta and Estonia. For Italy, 49% replied that they have a positive image of belonging to the Union with an increase of 5 points compared to 2021, against 10% who gave a negative answer. 52% of Europeans today have a positive perception of the EU in general, with an increase of three points compared to November-December 2021. This is the best result measured by the European Parliament polls since 2007. positive image of the EU, ranging from 76% in Ireland to 32% in Greece. Italy is positioned just below the average figure, with 48% of citizens having a positive perception of the EU. For the President of the Parliament Roberta Metsola “with the return of war to our continent, Europeans feel reassured by being part of the European Union. Citizens are deeply attached to freedom, they are ready to defend their values and are realizing more and more that democracy can no longer be taken for granted “. By contrast, Russia is viewed positively by only 10% of respondents, down from 30% in 2018, when this question was last asked. China returns to the penultimate place with 22%. In contrast, Europeans have a more positive image of the UK (65%), followed by the United States with 58%. Most citizens perceive the war in Ukraine as a fundamental change: 61% of Europeans are not sure that their lives will continue as before, an opinion shared by 50% of Italians. Only about a third of EU respondents (37%) believe it will remain so, while in Italy the percentage of confidence rises to 49%. With inflation and the cost of living on the rise since before the start of the Russian war in Ukraine, four out of ten Europeans say they are already impacting their standard of living (40%). In Italy the figure drops to 33%.
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