May 25, 2024

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Inflation, high cost of living and immigration are the most important issues for Europeans

Even the energy crisis and the climate are less of a concern for Europeans now: these issues have “moved” and let migration problems go ahead, Eurobarometer notes.

Last winter, which is quite understandable, Europeans were more worried about gas prices than during the heat wave. Now the migratory crisis is causing anxiety and the feeling that it is not easy to cope with it.

High energy prices and supply constraints have fallen from third to sixth on the list of “top issues of concern at European level,” according to the Eurobarometer survey released last Monday.

Opinion polls were conducted in May-June in 27 member countries EUand the responses received were compared with the results of the winter surveys in January and February of this year.

The main problem for 27% of respondents is inflation and the high cost of living, 25% of participants are most concerned about the geopolitical situation associated with the ongoing war in Ukraine. But over the past six months, these topics have “sunk” slightly, and immigration has risen to the third position (24%). Experts attribute this to the increasing tragedies in the Mediterranean and disagreements within the European Union regarding the reception and distribution of asylum seekers throughout the bloc.

Brussels initiated a revision of the migration rules, and individual governments also come up with their own regulatory measures. But not everything goes smoothly and successfully. An example of this is the fall of the government in the Netherlands, led by Mark Rutte. The ruling coalition partners, representing the center parties, did not agree with the imposition of restrictions on the reunification of families of refugees.

The top five most worrying Europeans are the fight against climate change (22%) and the economic situation (17%). The most significant decline is observed in the energy sector: in winter these problems bothered 26% of respondents, and now – only 16%. The only EU member state where the energy crisis still ranks as the top concern, along with immigration (25%), is Greece.

In general, says Eurobarometer, citizens support the overall energy strategy of Brussels: 85% of respondents believe that the EU should “massively” invest in renewable energy, and 82% believe that the bloc should “as soon as possible” reduce dependence on Russian fossil fuels fuel, 78% of those surveyed said they have already taken steps to reduce household energy consumption or plan to do so in the near future, states euronews.

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