Only 17 percent of Estonians consider development cooperation to be a priority, compared to 54 percent of European Union citizens on average who think so about their country, the Roundtable for Development Cooperation said on Saturday.
Even though Estonians’ attitude toward development cooperation had improved, the country still ranked among the last in terms of many indicators among EU members, a Eurobarometer survey brought out the findings of which were published last week.
The ratio of respondents in Estonia who believe that it is important to help people in developing countries has increased from 75 percent in 2015 to 78 percent at the end of 2016.
However, this remains one of the lowest such indicators in the EU, where 89 percent of respondents think help for people in developing countries is important.
Only 38 percent of residents in Estonia believe that fighting against poverty in developing countries should be a priority for the EU, compared with the EU average ratio of 68 percent. Development cooperation is considered to be a priority for their country by only 17 percent of the respondents in Estonia, compared with 54 percent across the EU.
People in Sweden and Ireland take the most optimistic stance when it comes to the role of the individual, with 87 percent and 76 percent of respondents in these countries respectively being positive about the role of the individual. The percentage of Estonians ascribing an important role to the individual is among the lowest of any population in the EU.
“People know that poverty is a big problem and definitely agree that Estonia should deal more with it,” spokeswoman of the Roundtable for Development Cooperation, Sigrid Solnik, said. “It is our desire to show that one should engage in reducing poverty all over the world.”
39 percent of Estonians are aware of the United Nations’ sustainable development goals that aim at finding a balance between the planet’s dwindling resources and seeing to the wellbeing of the people.
“Awareness of the sustainable development goals has increased by 7 percent compared to 2015. Unfortunately, people’s belief that everyone of us can contribute to reducing poverty and improving the planet’s situation has not increased by as much,” Solnik said.
Editor: Dario Cavegn