Press release №2328
06.04.2021
RUSSIA-EU: A MONITORING SURVEY

IN BRIEF

  • 55% of Russians have positive attitudes towards the EU countries
  • 48% of Russians consider that Russia should pursue partnership relations with the EU (+15 p.p. since 2008)
  • The percentage of those Russians who are confident that the Western countries will not treat Russia as an equal partner has increased by 18 p.p. since 2008 (35%).

March 1, 2021. The data below represent the results of a survey describing the Russian assessments of the Russia-EU relations.

More than half of Russians (55%) perceive positively the EU member-states. Twenty-seven percent of respondents have negative attitudes; 18% failed to provide an answer.

Despite positive perceptions of the EU countries, negative moods are dominant: rather chilly (40%) and hostile (13%). Every fourth Russian considers the current EU-Russia relations neutral (26%); 15%, positive (7%, friendly; 8% warm). 

The majority of Russians believe that Russia should pursue partnership relationships with the EU (48%). Since 2008, the share of those who share this opinion has increased by 15 p.p. On the contrary, one-third of respondents (35%) are confident that the Western countries will never treat Russia as an equal partner, thus it is pointless to look toward the EU. This opinion keeps strengthening:  since 2008, the percentage of those who share this stance has increased by 18 p.p. Every tenth respondent considers that Russia should pursue full EU membership (9%; −27 p.p. since 2008).

Russian nationwide VCIOM-Sputnik survey was conducted on February 24, 2021. Results are based on telephone interviews with 1,600 Russians aged 18 and older. Stratified dual-frame random sample based on a complete list of Russian landline and mobile phone numbers was used. 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 to the wording of questions and different circumstances arising during the fieldwork can introduce bias into the survey.

The EU is an economic and political union between twenty–seven European countries. What is your general attitude to the EU member-states? (closed-ended question, one answer, % of total respondents)
Total respondents
Very good 7
Mainly good 48
Mainly bad 20
Very bad 7
Don’t know 18
How would you assess the current EU-Russia relations?  (closed-ended question, one answer, % of total respondents)
Total respondents
Friendly 7
More likely warm 8
More likely chilly 40
Hostile 13
Neutral 26
Don’t know 6
In your opinion, what kind of relationships should Russia pursue when building relationships with the EU?  (closed-ended question, one answer, % of total respondents)
2003 2004 2005 2006 2008 2020
Russia should pursue full EU membership 35 35 33 30 36 9
Russia should pursue equal partnership with the EU 30 25 28 35 33 48
The Western countries will never treat Russia as an equal partner, thus it is pointless to look toward the EU 16 20 20 18 17 35
Don’t know 19 20 19 17 14 8
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