Caucasus Research Resources Center (CRRC) has recently published another research about the attitude of Georgian people towards the European Union.  Actually the research is rather comprehensive itself, as it covers wide range of issues, but I will draw your attention to the results that regard to the EU in particular.

As the research shows, general perception of Georgian citizens towards the EU is positive and there is even slight growth in this aspect comparing to the results shown in 2009. 52% of citizens have positive perception of the EU, while negative is just 5 %.

On the question “I’m Georgian, therefore I’m European” 59 % of citizens responded with YES, which has grown with 5 % since 2009. This is very crucial aspect of the research as the matter of identity and belonging in Georgia is rather vague due to various important aspects.   

The most important result of the research, which looks very promising to me is that, quite high number of Georgian citizens are ready to express their support through voting. On the question 'Would you vote for or against Georgia's membership of the EU',  80 % of citizens favoured EU membership, which is if not mistaken the highest number I recall throughout all Central and Eastern European countries.  Worth underlining that only 3 % of citizens are against of the EU Membership.

The only alarming result is related to the question whether Georgia is a member of the EU. 15 % of citizens think that Georgia is already part of the European Union, which is in fact less than in other South Caucasus countries, but still leaves some unanswered questions about the EU awareness in the country. 

Do Georgians really understand the EU to a level to realize what are they supporting? Indeed, they might be aware of certain benefits EU integration can bring, but it is not supplemented by the knowledge of the EU itself. Thus, we should not be surprised about the lack of knowledge among ordinary citizens. Especially in a situation when EU awareness campaign in Georgia (and same applies to all the ENP countries) is extremely ineffective. Despite the fact that government of Georgia still declares integration to the EU as one of the key policy priorities, and ironically enough, Georgia probably outnumbers any EU Member State in waving EU flags all over the country, unfortunately that doesn’t change much yet in respect of citizen's awareness about the EU. 



dato said...

kai potista

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