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News 18 Oct 17

EU Benefits Our Countries, Balkan People Tell Survey

Most Bulgarians, Croatians and Romanians see the European Union as beneficial to their countries, a survey released on Wednesday by the European Parliament said.

Ana Maria Touma
BIRN
Bucharest
The Parlameter shows that a majority of European Union citizens belive the bloc membership is beneficial for their countries. Photo: Bobby Hidy/Flikr

A significant majority of Bulgarian, Romanian and Croat citizens believe EU membership is good for their country, according to a survey on views of the EU released by the European Parliament on Wednesday.

Among the citizens of the three Balkan member states, Croats trust the EU the most, with 68 per cent saying that their country had benefitted from EU membership.  

Some 52 per cent of Croats most appreciate EU membership's impact on employment opportunities while 35 per cent also believe it has stimulated economic growth.

Among Romanians, 61 per cent believe EU membership benefits their country, with 46 per cent saying that being part of the EU has improved their employment chances. Some 26 per cent of Romanians believe EU membership has improved living conditions and also the level of democracy in their country.

Only 56 per cent of Bulgarians appreciate EU membership, though 52 per cent say it has created new work opportunities and 35 per cent believe it has aided cooperation with other member states.

The so-called Parlemeter Survey is based on face-to-face interviews with 27,881 Europeans aged 15 or more in all EU 28 member states, the European Parliament said in a press release. The interviews were conducted between September 23 and October 2, 2017.

On average, 60 per cent of EU citizens said their country benefited from EU membership, with approval peaking in Ireland, where the figure was 90 per cent, followed by Malta on 89 percent, Lithuania on 88 per cent, and Luxembourg, also on 88 per cent.

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