All previous public opinion polls show that the majority of Macedonian citizens support Macedonia’s membership in the European Union, and among the fundamental expectations of EU integration is the reduction of unemployment and poverty and improvement of the quality of life.
Such expectations are logical, if we take into account the data on the employment rate, life expectancy and gross domestic product per capita according to the purchasing power parity in Macedonia and EU countries. The data reveals that our country is at the bottom of the list of countries ranked in accordance with this criteria. Given that the people on the referendum scheduled for September 30 should decide whether they will accept the name change and membership of the country in the EU and NATO, they should an idea of what Macedonia would look like in the company of European countries.
With an employment rate of 70.3 percent among people aged between 20 – 64, Macedonia would be in second to last position in the EU under this criteria just behind Italy, where the employment rate is 70.1 percent. With the average life expectancy for women at 77.5 years and for men 73.4 years, Macedonian citizens would be among EU citizens with the shortest life expectancy. With GDP per capita according to the purchasing power parity (PPP), which in Macedonia is only 37 percent of the European average, Macedonian citizens would definitely be the poorest EU citizens.