Three-quarters of Belgians feel that membership of the European Union (EU) has benefitted their country, according to the latest edition of Parlemeter 2018, Eurobarometer Survey 90 of the European Parliament.
The barometer, a public opinion monitoring study that is updated regularly, measures citizens’ attitudes towards the EU and the European Parliament, as well as their perception of the benefits of belonging to the Union. The latest edition is based on 27,474 interviews of citizens, conducted fro 8 to 26 September 2018 throughout the EU, including 1,018 in Belgium.
On the issue of EU membership, Belgians were generally more positive than the average European. A whopping 71% of Belgian respondents felt it was good for the country, way above the EU average of 62%. In fact, 75% said they felt being a member of the Union was a good thing for Belgium because it contributed to economic growth, which was the reason most often selected fro a list proposed in the survey. The corresponding proportion for the whole of the EU was 68%, the highest score since 1983, according to the study.
Belgians, and Europeans as a whole, have been increasingly appreciative of the Union in recent months.
Almost all results of measurements of support for the EU have shown a net improvement since the 2016 referendum in Britain, pointing to increasing continent-wide concern over Brexit’s potential impact, it was noted on the sidelines of the publication. An increasing awareness of the advantages of EU membership resulting fro the tough negotiations on the British pullout is also evident, commentators said.