I don't think anyone else has asked this

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I don't think anyone else has asked this

Postby taylor777 on Mon Jan 22, 2007 4:22 pm

What is the general feeling among most people over there about the EU?

Like is there complaints? Can people really tell if it is better or worse than before, or do people care?

What about the general state of things? Like do they even know it is going to include several countries?

Dawn
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Postby farmer on Tue Jan 23, 2007 6:36 am

Hi Dawn,

last question first: Do you mean, if people know, the EU consists of several countries? Of course they do.

to your other questions:
There are big differences in public opinion towards EU among the EU countries.

In general people are not very satisfied, complaining more and more, but they are also not able to say it is because of their country's policy or because of the EU. For the most people EU is far away (in Brussels)...and they feel just something is not right...without beeing able to name it.
Often also seen as necessary evil...like "what should we have done else?"

Here some data and link from, official EU statistics, 2006 (interesting they named it "eb66"):

While the results of Eurobarometer 66 partly indicated a fall in support for EU membership (since 1990), the Netherlands and France (two countries in which the Constitution was roundly rejected in 2005) are now more supportive of the Treaty (with 59% and 56% respectively now in favour, acording to the poll).

However, there are still doubts, as a major survey recently undertaken in the Netherlands showed that more than 68% of the Dutch would still vote against the draft Constitution and last month's parliamentary elections were won by parties of a strong Eurosceptic persuasion.

Other interesting results from the Eurobarometer statistics:

Support for EU membership went down dramatically in the UK (-8%) and in Hungary (-10%);

Lithuania, Slovenia and Poland are the three countries in which most citizens think the EU is going in the right direction;
in France, UK and Germany only 22%, 24% and 28% respectively believe that 'all is well' with the EU, and;
enlargement support dropped considerably
in the UK (-8%) and Spain (-4%).

see the full
Statistics from 2006:
http://ec.europa.eu/public_opinion/arch ... hts_en.pdf

data from 2000:
http://ec.europa.eu/publications/bookle ... dex_en.htm

Greetings
Björn
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Postby taylor777 on Wed Jan 24, 2007 9:38 am

sorry I put the last question badly. I ment do they know that Turkey will become part of the EU (as well as others coming up)?
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Postby farmer on Thu Jan 25, 2007 9:02 am

dear Dawn,

thanks for clearifing...

from the beginning the EU was open to allow new members to become part of that adventure...and since 1957 it grew constantly.
So Europeans know that it possibly would grow further, like in the past.
And: it makes them nervous. But they know about and it is a big discussion subject. Especially Turkey.

For a country to become a new member it has to undergo
a certain amount of negotiation rounds concerning the different law areas
as a Candidate country. To become Candidate country you have to get an allowance by a EU decision. Then the countries law system has to be conformed to EU laws. That is normally a procedure of many years...
This helps also the Europeans and the countries people to get used to the possible new membership...

Turkey is a special story as it is such a different culture...
Already since 1999 they take part in the mentioned negotiation rounds as a Candidate.
The interesting thing is, that it was the EU then who asked the Turks to come and not the other way round.
In december 1999 (on his post fresh arriving) HR Solana, with Verheugen and the Finish Foreign Minister flew to Ankara to get the Turkish Prime minister Ecevit to fly with them back to Helsinki and to sign the Candidacy paper. It happened within a spontaneous action in one day. Solana spoke with the Turkish prime minister just 15 minutes in Ankara at midnight, before they took the plane back to Helsinki.

Image
"Last minute negotiations

Turkey initially hesitated before accepting the demands imposed by EU governments, but agreed after Mr Solana travelled to Ankara on Friday.

After a brief meeting in Ankara with Mr Ecevit, a relieved-looking Mr Solana, the EU's top foreign-affairs envoy, said "we have a yes". "

news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/560086.stm
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