Information News

Reforms necessary for Serbian EU accession supported by 73% of citizens

10. February 2015. |

In mid-December 2014, European Integration Office of the Government of the Republic of Serbia conducted a public opinion poll entitled “European Orientation of Serbian Citizens – Trends” and when asked how they would vote if a referendum with the question “Do you support Serbian membership in the EU?” were to be held tomorrow, 44 percent of Serbian citizens replied that they would vote in favour of the Serbian membership in the EU, 25 percent replied that they would vote against it, 21 percent that they would refrain from voting, while 10 percent did not know what they would vote for. The poll was carried out in compliance with the Eurobarometer standard, and 1,015 respondents older than 18 took part in it.

In comparison with the opinion poll from June, there was an important increase of as much as 6 percent of citizens, or 73 percent of them in total, who was of the opinion that the reforms necessary for the EU accession of our country should be implemented even if they had not been a precondition for Serbian membership in the EU, but merely for the wellbeing of the citizens themselves, or to achieve a better regulated Serbian state.

Majority of citizens, or as much as 56 percent of them, was of the opinion that fight against corruption, which impacts their everyday life the most, was among the most important reforms, followed by the reform of the health care system and judiciary reform that were ranked second and third by 46 and 33 percent of citizens respectively. These were followed by the reform of the educational system and agriculture (29%), improved protection of human rights (28%) and consumer protection (16%).

Majority of the citizens, or 66 percent of them, was of the opinion that the problems between Belgrade and Pristina should be resolved, regardless of whether the EU demanded it. Two thirds of respondents supported the determination of the Government of the Republic of Serbia to continue the talks on normalizing relations and their readiness to come to viable solutions through cooperation and dialogue.

35 percent of respondents said that the EU membership would be a good thing in their opinion, while 28 of citizens considered it to be a bad thing and 37 percent were indifferent towards this issue. However, for the majority of the citizens interviewed or for 43 percent of them, Serbian EU membership was still the road towards the better future for the young people, more opportunities for employment (38 percent), as well as an opportunity for freer movement within the EU borders (35 percent).

When asked about the development grant aid for Serbia, citizens did not have a clear picture about the biggest Serbian donors in the past 13 years.According to the official data, in the period 2000-2013, the European Union and its Member States have been the biggest Serbian donors with grants worth more than 3.5 billion of Euros, owing to which they have significantly contributed to Serbian development.

Since 2002, Serbian European Integration Office has regularly carried out the public opinion polls, in order to follow the citizens’ assessments of their interests in Serbian accession to the European Union and their expectations of the future for themselves and for their families.

Opinion poll can be downloaded here.