An overwhelming majority of EU citizens support investments in renewable energy and action to reduce the EU's dependency on Russian energy sources. The approval rate of the euro has reached its highest level ever.
However, Europeans are increasingly concerned about the economic situation in the EU and in their own country.
General perception of the EU
The Eurobarometer, conducted in June-July 2022, shows that 65% of Europeans (83% of the Irish) are optimistic about the future of the EU, a three-point increase compared with a similar survey conducted in January-February this year, before Russia's aggression against Ukraine.
The positive image of the EU is now at 47% (+3 pp) (70% in Ireland, - 1 pp), its highest level since autumn 2009, while 36% of respondents have neutral views (23% in Ireland) and 16% negative views about the EU (6% in Ireland).
In addition, 49% of Europeans (and 58% of the Irish) tend to trust the EU (+2 pp) and 34% tend to trust their national government (46% in Ireland).
The response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine
In line with the previous surveys, citizens confirm their strong support to the EU's response to Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine. When it comes EU actions, humanitarian support is the most approved (92%) (95% in Ireland) followed by welcoming in the EU Ukrainians fleeing the war (90%) (94% in Ireland).
78% of Europeans (and 90% of the Irish) support economic sanctions imposed by the EU on the Russian government, companies and individuals.
Almost seven in ten interviewees (68%) (86% of the Irish interviewees) are in favour of financing the supply and delivery of military equipment to Ukraine.
The absolute majority of respondents are satisfied with the response of both the EU (57%) (74% in Ireland) and their national government (55%) (81% in Ireland).
Energy and energy security
An overwhelming majority of EU citizens agree that the EU should invest in renewable energies (87%) (94% in Ireland), reduce its dependency on Russian sources of energy (86%) (93% in Ireland) and that gas storage in EU countries should be filled up rapidly to allow uninterrupted gas supply during winter (86%) (93% in Ireland).
In addition, 85% (93% in Ireland) believe that increasing energy efficiency will make us less dependent from energy producers outside the EU, while 83% (94% in Ireland) are in favour of EU Member States jointly buying energy from other countries to get a better price.
78% of respondents (86% in Ireland) say that they have recently taken action to reduce their energy consumption or that they plan to do so in the near future.
The economy and the euro
Positive perception of the situation of the European economy has decreased by 5 percentage points since early 2022 and is now at 40% (48% in Ireland). The majority of respondents (51%, +6 pp) (42% in Ireland) think that the situation of the European economy is currently bad. In addition, positive perception of the situation of the national economy has also decreased by 5 percentage points, to 34% with 64% finding the situation of their national economy as bad (+5 pp).
The Irish perceptions for the national economy are better with 47% having positive view and 51% negative. The majority of respondents expect the situation of the national economy to worsen in the next 12 months (53%, +22 pp) (52% in Ireland).
Meanwhile, support for the euro is rising, reaching its highest level ever: eight out of 10 respondents in the euro area (+ 3 pp) and 72% in the EU (+3 pp) are in favour of a European economic and monetary union with one single currency, the euro. The support in Ireland is at 90%.
More than half of Europeans (56%) (and 79% of the Irish) think that EU's largest economic stimulus package - NextGenerationEU - can be effective to respond to the current economic challenges.
- Publication date
- 6 September 2022
- Representation in Ireland