Eurobarometer poll: For Bulgarians, economic situation bigger issue than health

For Bulgarians, the top two issues facing the country are the economic situation and rising prices, with health in third place among concerns, according to a Eurobarometer poll.

The poll was done in July and the results, along with those for all other European Union member states, released on October 23. This means that the poll was done three months ago, when the Covid-19 situation in Bulgaria was not as bad as it is now.

About 82 per cent of Bulgarians saw the situation of the country’s economy as bad, an increase of eight percentage points compared with the Eurobarometer autumn 2019 poll.

Forty-three per cent expected Bulgaria’s economic situation to worsen while 22 per cent believed it would stay the same.

Forty per cent expected unemployment to worsen while 12 per cent expected their personal job situation to worsen.

Fifty-three per cent of those polled saw the financial situation of their household as bad.

Seventy-five per cent of Bulgarians polled did not trust Parliament and 71 per cent did not trust the country’s government.

Asked when they thought Bulgaria’s economy would recover from the adverse effects of the new coronavirus, seven per cent said “before the end of 2020”, 26 per cent said “in 2021”, 23 per cent “in 2022”, 31 per cent “in 2023 or after that”. Ten per cent said “Never”.

Forty-eight per cent trusted the EU – a 12 percentage point drop since the autumn poll, the largest drop in an EU country. Thirty-two per cent said that they did not trust the EU.

Bulgarians saw the biggest issue facing the EU as its economic situation. However, in contrast to their ranking of issues for their own country, they saw the second-biggest issue for the EU as immigration, while health was in third place.

Forty-three per cent opposed the euro, 36 per cent were for and 21 per cent answered “don’t know”. The Bulgarian figure for “don’t know” was by far the highest in the EU.

Fifty-three per cent of Bulgarians had a positive image of the EU, a drop of eight per cent since the autumn Eurobarometer poll. Twenty-seven per cent had a neutral image, an increase of five percentage points, while 20 per cent had a negative image, an increase of seven percentage points.

Fifty-nine per cent of Bulgarians were optimistic about the future of the EU, a drop of four percentage points since the autumn poll, while 40 per cent were pessimistic, an increase of 13 percentage points.

(Photo: Clive Leviev-Sawyer)

The Sofia Globe’s coverage of the Covid-19 situation in Bulgaria is supported by the Embassy of Switzerland.

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The Sofia Globe staff

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