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European Commission - Press release

Autumn 2017 Standard Eurobarometer: Fixing the roof while the sun is shining

Brussels, 19 December 2017

According to a new Eurobarometer released today, a majority of Europeans think the situation of the economy is good. Support for the euro is at its highest since 2004 in the euro area and optimism for the future of the EU outweighs pessimism.

Finally, a majority of Europeans regard the EU as a place of stability in a troubled world. These are some of the key results of the latest Standard Eurobarometer survey published today, together with the Special Eurobarometer survey “Future of Europe”.

1. Optimism about state of economy and support for euro growing

For the first time since the start of the economic and financial crisis in 2007, Europeans have a positive opinion of the current situation of the European economy (48%, +6 percentage points since spring 2017) rather than a negative one (39%, -7). A majority of respondents say that the current situation of the European economy is good in 23 Member States (up from 21 in spring 2017). Since spring 2017, positive perceptions have gained ground in 23 Member States, with double-digit increases in Spain (39%, +12), Portugal (58%, +11) and Austria (63%, +10).

48% of Europeans consider that the current situation of their national economy is good (+2). This is the highest level recorded since autumn 2007. Since spring 2017, the positive perception of national economic situation has increased in 19 Member States, led by Finland (71%, +12), Slovenia (46%, +12), Austria (77%, +9) and Hungary (50%, +9). Perceptions between Member States vary though with 91% in the Netherlands and in Germany considering the situation of their national economy as good while only 2% do so in Greece.

In the euro area, three-quarters of respondents support the euro (74%, +1), which is a new record high for this question since 2004. 80% or more support the euro in seven countries: Slovakia, Belgium, Germany, Spain, Estonia, Ireland and Slovenia.

2. Trust in the European Union remains high

40% of Europeans have a positive image of the EU; 37% have a neutral image, while the proportion of Europeans who have a negative image of the EU remains low at 21%. These results have remained stable compared to spring 2017 and confirm the positive trend recorded since 2016. A majority of respondents have a positive image of the EU in 14 countries, with the highest percentages in Ireland (59%), Bulgaria and Luxembourg (both 57%).

Trust in the EU stands at 41% (-1). A majority of respondents trust the EU in 18 Member States (compared to only 15 in spring). Trust in the EU is highest in Lithuania (64%), Bulgaria (57%) and Luxembourg (56%). Since spring 2017, trust in the EU has gained ground in ten countries, notably in Belgium (53%, +7), Slovakia (48%, +5) and the Czech Republic (35%, +5). Trust in the EU has declined in 17 countries.

A majority of Europeans are optimistic about the future of the EU (57%, +1). This is in all but two Member States (up from 24 in spring 2017): Greece (60% “pessimistic” vs. 37% “optimistic”) and the United Kingdom (48% vs. 44%). Optimism on the future of the EU is highest in Ireland (80%), Luxembourg (72%) and Malta (70%). At the lower end of the scale are France (49%) and Italy (50%).

44% of Europeans agree that their "voice counts in the EU", reaching a new record for this indicator since autumn 2004.

Finally, 70% of Europeans feel they are citizens of the EU. “The free movement of people, goods and services within the EU” and “peace among the Member States of the EU” are perceived as the two most positive results of the EU, for 57% and 56% of Europeans respectively.

3. Migration tops Europeans' concerns, followed by terrorism

Immigration is the top challenge that the EU is currently facing (39%, +1). Terrorism, comes second (38%, -6 points), well ahead of the economic situation (17%, -1), the state of Member States' public finances (16%, -1) and unemployment (13%,-2). At national level, the main concerns remain unemployment (25%,-4) and immigration (22%, unchanged).

4. Future of Europe survey

75% Europeans have a positive view of the European Union with the highest results in Lithuania (91%), Denmark (89%) and the Netherlands (87%).71% of Europeans think that the EU is “a place of stability in a troubled world” (+5 since 2016).


The “Autumn 2017 - Standard Eurobarometer” (EB 88) was conducted through face-to-face interviews between 5 and 19 November 2017. 33,193 people were interviewed across EU Member States and in the candidate countries[1].

The Special Eurobarometer 467 “Future of Europe” was conducted through telephone interviews between 23 September and 2 October 2017. 27,881 people were interviewed in the EU Member States.

For More Information

- Standard Eurobarometer 88

- The report for the Special Eurobarometer survey 467 “Future of Europe


[1] The 28 European Union (EU) Member States, five candidate countries (the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Turkey, Montenegro, Serbia and Albania) and the Turkish Cypriot Community in the part of the country that is not controlled by the government of the Republic of Cyprus.


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