Press release №2080
09.07.2018
TOWARDS HELSINKI SUMMIT: A CAUTIOUS HOPE

IN BRIEF

  • Russia-US relations Index dropped to -74 p. in July 2018
  • Twenty-five percent of Russians expect strengthening of relations between Russia and the U.S., 9% expect deterioration

Every third Russian expects that Putin’s meeting with Trump will bring positive results.

MOSCOW, July 9, 2018. Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM) presents the data of a survey devoted to the Russia-U.S. relationship and the meeting between Putin and Trump.

Public assessments of the bilateral relationship are worse than a year ago: the corresponding index fell from -44 in July 2017 to the current -74 p.; negative assessments are still dominant. Every second Russian (49%) points to tensions; a further 26% think the relationships are chilly. Only 1-2% of respondents mention good-neighborliness and friendship.  

An overwhelming majority (71%) consider that at the upcoming meeting Trump will make an attempt to strengthen his country’s position at the expense of others. On the contrary, 62% of Russians believe that Vladimir Putin will seek solutions to the problems between the two countries and prospects for rapprochement.

More than half of Russians (56%) do not expect any substantial changes after the Trump's one-on-one meeting with Putin. Every third (33%) expects positive and only 1% negative results. Fifty-four percent of Russians also do not expect any changes in the bilateral relationship in the next two to three years. A quarter of respondents (25%) hope for improvements, while 9% forecast deterioration. 

Russians tend to view the U.S. negatively: 26% have “negative” attitudes towards the United States; 14% see the country “very negatively”. However this share has considerably decreased over the recent four years: the 2014 data suggest that 66% of respondents had negative perceptions. The basic reasons behind that are the U.S. foreign policy and interference in other countries’ affairs (37%) and poor attitudes toward Russia (34%). Twenty- nine percent of respondents have positive views of the U.S.

*Russia-U.S. Relations Index describes how Russians assess the current state of the bilateral relationship. The Index is based on the question “How would you assess the current U.S.-Russia relationship?” It is calculated as the sum of positive answers (“normal, calm”, “good good-neighborly”, “friendly”) and negative answers (“chilly”, “tense”, “hostile”), measured in points and can vary between -100 and 100. The higher the index, the better Russians assess the bilateral relationships.

The VCIOM-Sputnik survey was conducted on July 5, 2018, and involved 1,600 Russians aged 18 and over. The survey was telephone-based and carried out using stratified dual-frame random sample based on a complete list of landline and mobile phone numbers operating in Russia. The data were weighted according to selection probability and social and demographic characteristics. The margin of error at a 95% confidence level does not exceed 2.5%. In addition to sampling error, minor changes in question wording and different circumstances arising during the fieldwork can introduce bias into the survey.

The 2016 results are based on household surveys. The 2017 results are based on a VCIOM-Sputnik survey.
How would you assess the current U.S.-Russia relationship? (closed-ended question, one answer, % of total respondents)
  Х.2016 VII.2017 2018
Friendly 1 5 2
Good, good-neighborly 1 4 1
Normal, calm 4 16 7
Chilly   18 29 26
Tense 46 30 49
Hostile 24 10 9
Don’t know 6 6 6
Index -82 -44 -74
In July, Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet American President Donald Trump. In your opinion, what position will … adopt in the talks ?(closed-ended question, one answer per each line, % of total respondents)
  Vladimir Putin Donald Trump
Seeking solutions to the problems in bilateral relations; seeking rapprochement 62 14
Striving to strengthen the position of his country at the expense of the other country   23 71
Don’t know 15 15

In your opinion, will the upcoming meeting bring positive, negative results or no results for Russia?  (closed-ended question, one answer, % of total respondents)  
  Total respondents
Positive results for Russia 33
Negative results for Russia 1
It will have no practical effects for Russia 56
Don’t know 10
In your opinion, how will the U.S.-Russia relations evolve in the next two to three years?  (closed-ended question, one answer, % of total respondents)  
  Total respondents
Bilateral relations are likely to improve 25
Bilateral relations are likely to worsen 9
No change 54
Don’t know 12
How do you generally view the United States?   (closed-ended question, one answer, % of total respondents)
  2011 2012 2013 2014 2018
Very positively  3 5 3 1 2
Mainly positively 52 48 43 21 27
Mainly negatively 22 25 28 39 26
Very negatively 7 7 7 27 14
Don’t know 16 15 19 12 31

 

Why do you generally view the United States negatively?  (open-ended question, up to 3 answers, % of those who view the U.S. negatively)
  % of those who view the U.S. negatively
I don’t like their foreign policy, interference in other countries’ affairs 37
Poor attitudes towards Russia 34
Because of sanctions 8
They make wars 7
I don’t like their culture, mentality 5
Cheaters, liars 4
I simply don’t like them 2
They haven’t done anything good 2
Historical rival; Russia’s enemy 2
I don’t like their president 1
They adopt the policy of double standards 1
Because of the Information provided by our media 1
I am a patriot 1
Other 5
Don’t know 11
Note: Using materials from the site www.wciom.ru or wciom.com, as well as distributed by VCIOM, the reference to the source (or hyperlink for the electronic media) is obligatory!
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