The results of the Spring Eurobarometer opinion poll have just been published. Data show that optimism is on the rise in Europe with an increasing majority of people in the EU positive about the future of the European Union. Irish people are the most optimistic of all (77%) and most likely of all to have a positive image of the EU, at 58%, up 3 points since autumn 2016. Close to a majority of Europeans are now also optimistic about their national economy, while support for the euro shows its highest score since 2004. Over two-thirds of Irish people are positive about the national economy (68%, up 4 points since autumn 2016).
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Highlights for Ireland
Irish respondents (77%, unchanged) are the most optimistic about the future of the European Union, compared to an EU average of 56% (+6pp). Ireland is followed by Luxembourg at 73%, Malta at 71% and Denmark at 70%. Pessimism is the majority view in Greece (69%), Cyprus (52%), the Czech Republic (51%) and the United Kingdom (49% vs. 39% total ‘optimistic’).
Irish people at 58% (+3 percentage points since the autumn) are also the most likely to have a positive image of the EU, followed by Luxembourg (57%) and Bulgaria (55%). (EU average 40% +5 pp).)
Only 13% of Irish respondents have a negative image of the EU.
Irish respondents (83%) are in joint second place with Slovenia for support for the Euro. Luxembourg occupies the top position at 85% with support lowest in the UK (23%) and the Czech Republic at 20%. The EU average is 60%.
82% (+ 4 pp) of Irish citizens feel they are citizens of the EU, second highest in the EU after Luxembourg at 89%. The EU average is 68% with respondents in the UK (54%), Italy (53%) and Greece (48%) least likely to feel they are citizens of the EU.
Main issues facing Ireland at the moment
Main concerns at personal level
Trust in national governments and parliaments and in the European Union
Freedom of Movement and the euro
Main issues facing the EU at the moment - Europe-wide
In Ireland, 1,009 people were interviewed for the survey between 20 and 29 May 2017 (by Behaviour and Attitudes).
The Eurobarometer report, including an Ireland factsheet, is available at: http://ec.europa.eu/commfrontoffice/publicopinion/index.cfm/Survey/getSurveyDetail/instruments/STANDARD/surveyKy/2142
The Ireland country factsheet is available here.
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