The Malta Independent 26 May 2019, Sunday

68% say EU is a good thing for Malta

Jeremy Micallef Monday, 10 December 2018, 18:10 Last update: about 7 months ago

68% of respondents of a Flash Eurobarometer n Malta believe that, generally speaking, Malta's membership in the European Union (EU) is a good thing.

The results came from the first results of a European Parliament flash Eurobarometer which focused on public opinion, and the 2019 MEP elections Lead Candidate Process and European Parliament Media Recall. The survey was conducted between the 26 November and 3 December 2018. 26,071 respondents aged 15 or more took part across the EU.

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Whilst 68% of respondents said that membership in the EU is a good thing, 8% and 21% said that it was a "bad thing" and "neither a good thing nor a bad thing" respectively.

In separate question, the significantly lower amount of 45% of respondents replied that the EU generally conjured up a "total positive" image, with 40% saying that the EU conjured a "neutral image" and 10% saying "total negative".

Maltese respondents answered very similarly to the European average.

With regards to the lead candidate process, the respondents were given the following explanation prior to being presented with a question - "In 2014, based on the results of the EU elections, a lead candidate of a European political family was elected President of the European Commission. Europeans could therefore not only vote for who should represent them in the European Parliament, but also take part in the process of electing the President of the European Commission. In the next European elections, voters would have for the second time the opportunity to take part in the process of electing the President of the Commission."

57% of all member state respondents voted yes when asked whether this process of electing the President of the European Commission, depending on the results of the European elections, would make them more likely to vote than at the present.

36% voted that it would not make them more likely to vote, whilst 7% said they didn't know.

Locally, 44% of respondents answered in the affirmative, whilst the same number of individuals remarked that this move would not make them more likely to vote.

An overwhelming number of respondents agreed with the statement that it only makes sense if it (the aforementioned lead candidate process) is accompanied by a real debate about European issues and the future of the EU.

Media Recall

60% of EU citizens say that they have recently heard about European Parliament's activities from the press, seen on the Internet or on television or heard on the radio.

Malta placed towards the lower end of the graph with 43% having said that they have recently herd about European Parliament's activities, and 55% saying they haven't.

When queried on what they recall were the specific topics that were discussed, the top three answers were immigration, combating climate change and protecting the environment, and economy and growth at 77%, 70%, and 63% respectively.

Immigration was the most frequently mentioned item in in Malta, followed by economy and growth, and combating climate change and protecting the environment.

Malta placed at the higher end of the spectrum with regards to having heard about the next MEP elections with 57% saying that they had recently read in the press, seen on the Internet or on television or heard on the radio.


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