Hungarians trust EU, pessimistic about economy – Eurobarometer

Budapest, February 24 (MTI) – Trust in the European Union is especially strong among Hungarians, a Eurobarometer survey conducted in November 2010 shows.

Fully 80 percent of Hungarians think that the EU’s word counts in the world, compared to the European average of 65 percent, while 57 percent of Hungarians are optimistic about the future of the bloc, the survey published on Thursday found.

    At the same time, 53 percent have a feeling of security due to the country’s EU membership.

    But when it comes to assessing their own lives, Hungarians are far less positive than their European peers. Only half of respondents were satisfied with their lives, compared to a European average of 78 percent. Fully 93 percent see their own country’s situation in a negative light compared to 70 percent in other EU member states.

    Moreover, Hungarians are pessimistic about the future, and very few believe their own material situation will improve or the country’s position on the employment front or economy will take a turn for the better. Similarly Hungarians do not see the EU’s position or the world at large doing better in these areas.

    In autumn 2009, 38 percent of Hungarians thought the country had overcome the worst of the global economic crisis while in the latest survey 54 percent thought the same.

    Tamas Szucs, the head of the European Commission’s representation to Hungary, noted that trust in the government and parliament had grown since last spring and was significantly higher than the EU average: whereas only 28 percent trust their governments, in Hungary 48 percent do.

    Reducing unemployment and improving the economy are the most burning issues for Hungarians, followed by electricity-price rises, health care, the public debt, crime and pensions.

    The Hungarian part of the survey was conducted on behalf of Eurobarometer by Tarki with a sample of one thousand adults.

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