The FINANCIAL -- Citizens of the Eastern Partnership countries are more satisfied with their lives, but pessimistic about the economy; they also have a more positive image of the EU, and would like it to play a greater role in security and defence. These are some of the key findings of the sixth wave (Autumn 2014) of the EU Neighbourhood Barometer just released and online published by EU Neighbourhood Info.
The proportion of satisfied respondents increased from 43% in spring 2014 to 46% in autumn, but nearly four in five judge the economic situation in their countries as bad (79%). Almost two-thirds continue to be dissatisfied with the way democracy works.
Respondents name peace and security (66%) as by far the most important area of cooperation. The areas in which respondents are most likely to call for greater EU involvement continue to be trade (76%), economic development (74%) and human rights (64%). Security and defence have gained ground in the last six months – now 64%, +14 percentage points.
For the first time in the history of the barometer, the absolute majority of respondents agrees enough information on the EU is available (52%), with 50% saying it is easy to understand, according to EU Neighbourhood Info.