Survey: Estonian residents support for European Union is increasing ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

Flag of the European Union and related institutions next to the Estonian flag.
Flag of the European Union and related institutions next to the Estonian flag. Source: ERR

A Eurobarometer survey shows that residents of Estonia have increasingly popular feelings towards the European Union, and public opinion on EU membership has reached the highest level over the past five years.

Altogether 49 percent of the respondents in Estonia said that for them the EU conjures up a positive image, while 41 percent said the image was neutral and 9 percent deemed it negative, spokespeople for the European Commission told BNS on Thursday. Estonian residents' support for the European Union is increasing and exceeds the EU average. 

Among the institutions that are most trusted by Estonia's residents are the police, which 82 percent of the respondents find trustworthy, the justice system 63 percent, local governments 56 percent, the European Union 54 percent, and the Estonian government 43 percent. Political parties are deemed trustworthy by just 13 percent of the participants in the survey, however.

Altogether 34 percent of Estonian residents regard inflation the biggest problem faced by their country. Other issues deemed problematic include health and social security and pensions, both on 27 percent. While the environment and climate issues placed second in the EU as a whole, in Estonia environmental concerns were ranked sixth in severity. 

Aivar Voog, survey manager at pollster Kantar Emor, noted, that the latter problems were deemed more important by 9 percentage points compared to the year before.

The survey also took a more detailed look at Estonians' attitudes regarding environmental problems. Similarly to other EU citizens, 57 percent of Estonians prioritized the need to reduce plastic waste and develop renewable energy production, 50 percent. Respondents were also in favor of stricter climate and environmental requirements and protection of workers' rights in trade agreements concluded with third states.

The survey was commissioned by the European Commission and carried out by pollster Kantar Emor in 34 states from November 14 to 29, 2019. Altogether 1,001 EU citizens residing in Estonia were polled from November 14 to 26.  

The survey results are available to view at the website of the European Commission here.

The European Commission also published on Tuesday a survey into environmental issues, which showed that 94 percent of EU citizens said that environmental protection is an important issue for them.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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