The European Union retains a broadly positive image across the countries of the Eastern Neighbourhood, improving in most of them, and is the most trusted international organisation across all six countries of the region, well ahead of the UN, NATO and the Eurasian Economic Union. Citizens in all countries bar Belarus overwhelmingly feel that their country has good relations with the EU. These are just some of the results of the 2022 annual survey of opinion in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine – carried out by the EU regional Communication Programme for the Eastern Neighbourhood (EU NEIGHBOURS east).
The surveys were conducted in June-July 2022, with face-to-face interviews in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Moldova. In Ukraine, Computer Assisted Telephone Interviews were carried out, while in Belarus an online panel survey was used.
Almost three-quarters of Armenians (73%) feel their country has good relations with the EU, up more than ten percentage points on last year, and 65% are aware of the EU’s financial support to the country. Fifty-five per cent trust the EU, down from 65% in 2017, but up steeply on last year’s low of 43%, and more than any other international organisation. Forty-two per cent of Armenians have a positive image of the EU, compared to just 11% with a negative opinion.
Almost half (48%) of Azerbaijanis have a positive opinion of the EU, more than at any other time since the surveys began in 2016, with 76% – again more than ever before – saying their country had good relations with the EU. Awareness of EU financial support to Azerbaijan is also at a high of 41%, while 43% trust the EU, more than they do any other international organisation.
While Belarusians acknowledge the slump in their country’s relations with the EU (only 16% feel their country has good relations with the EU this year, down from a high of 62% in 2019 and compared to 45% who admit relations are bad), more Belarusians trust the EU (38%) than do not (31%), and the EU is still more trusted than any other international organisation, including the Eurasian Economic Union (trusted by 33% of respondents).
An overwhelming majority of Georgians trust the EU, have a positive image of it, and are aware of EU financial support to Georgia – with all indicators at their highest level this year since the surveys began in 2016. Sixty-five per cent of Georgians have a positive view of the EU this year (up 13 points on 2016, and compared to just 3% of negative views), 84% feel the EU and Georgia have good relations, 83% trust the EU (the highest of all the EaP countries), and 76% are aware of the EU’s financial support.
In the year when the EU granted candidate status to the Republic of Moldova, 60% of Moldovans have a good awareness of what the EU is all about, and 78% are aware of the EU’s financial support for Moldova. Three-quarters (74%) feel the EU and Moldova have good relations and 60% have a positive image of the EU (compared to just 9% with a negative impression), while 57% trust the EU, more than they do any other international organisation.
Awareness and support of the EU has soared to overwhelming levels in Ukraine, reflecting massive EU support in the face of Russia’s all-out war against Ukraine, and the granting of EU candidate status to Ukraine. According to the survey, 95% of Ukrainians are aware of EU support (with 98% aware of support for refugees and IDPs, and 97% aware of EU humanitarian aid), and 94% feel their country has good relations with the EU – up from 65% last year. Sixty-five per cent have a positive view of the EU (up from 57% last year and 49% when the surveys began in 2016), while only 2% have a negative view.
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This website is managed by the EU-funded Regional Communication Programme for the Eastern Neighbourhood ('EU NEIGHBOURS east’), which complements and supports the communication of the Delegations of the European Union in the Eastern partner countries, and works under the guidance of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, and the European External Action Service. EU NEIGHBOURS east is implemented by a B&S Europe-led consortium. It is part of the larger Neighbourhood Communication Programme (2020-2024) for the EU's Eastern and Southern Neighbourhood, which also includes 'EU NEIGHBOURS south’ project that runs the EU Neighbours portal.