More than half of the Maltese respondents participating in the latest Eurobarometer survey appear to be more sceptical about Malta’s economy and its future. 53 per cent of these respondents believe that the country’s economy will be in a worse state this time next year, a figure which has gone up by six percentage points since last March’s survey.
This survey was carried out throughout from the last week of September up until the first two weeks of October.
Additionally, 46 per cent foresee their living conditions to be worse this time next year, a percentage that was higher than the EU average. This figure also went up since March, with a total of eight percentage points.
Public morale has also taken a drastic hit, with 50 per cent saying that Malta is going in the wrong direction. Here the Eurobarometer notes a sharp increase of 37 per cent who believe so.
A year ago, 65 per cent of the Maltese respondents believed the country to be going in the right direction which was significantly higher than the EU average of 24 per cent. This time around, only 28 per cent believe that the country is going in the right direction.
To add insult to injury an alarming 85 per cent of Maltese respondents expect their standard of living to decrease over the coming year, 12 per cent higher than the figure noted across European countries (73 per cent).
When it comes to voicing concerns and opinions, 44 per cent of respondents feel that their opinion matters. This figure is 17 per cent below EU average.
On a positive note, the majority of the Maltese are happy with Malta’s membership to the EU, with a 92 per cent figure indicating that they have benefitted since the membership in 2004. This figure was more positive than the EU average, that of 72 per cent.
Meanwhile, a little above one-third of the respondents believe that the EU brings new work opportunities whilst close to half believe that the EU contributes to Malta’s economic growth.
However, Maltese respondents show significantly higher concern than other Europeans regarding the EU’s impact on Malta’s borders. A proportion of 40 per cent believe EU membership undermines Malta’s borders, compared to 24 per cent of European, meanwhile with regards to putting people’s job in danger, this came in at 33 per cent locally compared to Europe’s 18 per cent, and 32 per cent of Malta-based respondents believe the EU places the country at risk when maintaining peace and security, compared to 12 per cent in Europe.
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