This conclusion is included in the results of the Eurobarometer presented last week in Bucharest. According to it, 48 percent of Romanians are content with their life – quite a high percentage although still significantly lower than the average for other member states (72 percent). The Swedes are the happiest regarding their standard of living (98 percent) with Bulgarians (36 percent) at the opposite end, says the report.
On the other hand, the Eurobarometer shows that Romanian optimism is related to the future economic development of the country. Thirty percent of Romanians believe that their country will be doing better economically in 12 months time, compared to only 20 percent of greater-EU citizens.
“The latest National Report shows that, upon accession, Romanians continue to strongly believe in the European Union and associate a better future with it” said Giorgio Ficcarelli, Head of the Operational Transition Team of the EC Representation. He added that there is a characteristic of stability in terms of trust in European institutions and optimism as well as trust in European values.
“Romanians' significant and constant trust in the EU is a combined result of the dissatisfaction with the present living standards of the citizens of a country that rejects socialism and trusts traditional institutions, among which the church and army rank first,” added Professor Dumitru Sandu, the editor of the National Report.
Romanians, just like other EU citizens, believe that human rights, peace and respect for human life are values of utmost importance for their personal life. Also, personal fulfilment and work at the expense of free time seem to be higher on the Romanians' agenda.
Regarding public priorities, Romanians are more preoccupied with economic development, prices and inflation (30 percent) to a larger degree than in the new member states (20 percent) and the EU-15 (15 percent). Pensions, the health care system, taxes and economic development of their country rank first among Romanians' priorities while EU citizens are more concerned with unemployment, terrorism and immigration. Romanians expect the EU institutions and the Romanian government to cooperate in solving problems related to immigration, pensions, health and regional development. However, they think that the Romanian government alone should tackle issues related to environmental protection, agriculture, energy and consumer protection.
Over 1000 Romanians expressed their opinions concerning the EU and Romanian institutions, stated their social priorities and their values in this survey, which was conducted in early September last year.