Majority of Europeans ‘Expect End of EU within 20 Years’
More than half of Europeans believe the EU is likely to collapse within a generation, despite support for the bloc hitting heights not recorded in more than a quarter of a century.
In France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Slovakia, Romania, Greece, the Czech Republic and Poland, a majority of people surveyed thought EU disintegration was a “realistic possibility” in the next 10 to 20 years, ”The Guardian” reports.
The figures are particularly stark in France, where President Emmanuel Macron’s La République En Marche party is trailing behind Marine Le Pen’s Brussels-bashing Rassemblement National (RN) in the polls for next week’s European elections.
According to the survey, commissioned by the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) thinktank, 58% of people in France believe the EU is very likely or fairly likely to fall apart within 20 years, second only to Slovakia (66%).
Of the 14 countries polled by YouGov – constituting more than 70% of the seats of the European parliament – it was only in Sweden (44%), Denmark (41%) and Spain (40%) that the proportion predicting implosion dipped below a majority.
Nearly seven decades after the creation of the European Coal and Steel Community, bringing together France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg in a pact designed to stave off further war, three in 10 people polled said conflict among countries within the EU was a realistic possibility.
As many as a third of voters in France and Poland said they believed a war could be possible.
That sentiment was notably strong among people planning to abstain or vote for extremists next week. Nearly half (46%) of supporters of RN and 41% of supporters of Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) in Germany held this view.