Poll: Slight rise in EU enthusiasm
The EU's decision to make Serbia candidate for membership has led to a slight increase in the pro-EU sentiment in the country, a new poll has shown.Source: Beta
The telephone survey, conducted by the Novi Sad-based NGO Center for Democracy and Development in two stages - before and after the candidature decision - included 1,550 respondents.
In March. 54.2 percent of Serbians said they were "in favor of the EU" - three percent up compared to February. When the EU made its decision to grant Serbia the candidate status, the number of those "opposing the EU" dropped to 31.8 from 33.1 percent, said the center.
Political analyst Branko Radun commented on thees results to say that the candidature decision did influence the citizens' opinions on this issue - but that the overall trend is that "of a decline of the positive attitude toward the EU".
"This may be a small temporary rise due to the candidate status, but I believe that once the citizens realize that Serbia realistically stands to gain nothing from it in the short term, the pro-EU sentiment will continue to decline," said he.
The poll also showed that Serbia's EU candidature brought a relatively small increase in the popularity of the ruling coalition, mostly to the Democratic Party (DS).
Radun believes that this issue "most likely won't decide the election - but it would have, had Serbia not been made a candidate".