According to an opinion poll published on Monday (1 March) 55% of Russians have a positive attitude towards EU states, and nearly half (48%) wish for partner relations with the EU. The poll, conducted by the Russian Public Opinion Research Center was held on February 24 among 1,600 respondents.
The Russian news agency, TASS, reported that according to the poll, 27% of respondents have a negative attitude towards the EU, and 18% were undecided. Despite the generally positive stance of Russians on EU states, the majority of those polled are confident that a negative attitude is prevailing in the current relations of Russia with EU countries: 40% consider the relations chilly, and 13% brand the bilateral ties as hostile. One in four Russians (26%) consider the current relations neutral, and only 15% think they are positive.
The poll also shows that nearly half of those polled (48%) think that Russia must strive towards establishing partner ties with the EU. The share of people who are of this opinion has grown by 15% compared to 2008. Over a third of respondents (35%) are confident that the West will never treat Russia as an equal partner, so there is no point for Russia to strive towards Europe. On the contrary, one in ten respondents (9%) think that Russia should seek to become a EU member state.
The margin of error does not surpass 2.5% with the probability of 95%.
The results of the poll come at a point when EU-Russia relations are considered to be at their lowest point for decades.