Significant decline in citizens’ perceptions of EU’s influence in North Macedonia


In 2021, 68% of the citizens supported the idea of North Macedonia becoming EU member-state, but the Macedonian citizens were not sufficiently informed about the trajectory and the time frame of the EU accession process itself.

The perceived influence of EU in North Macedonia has dropped to the lowest ranking in the last several years – from 44.8% in 2019 to 9.5% in 2021, show the results from the two researches that were conducted by the Institute for Democracy “Societas Civilis” in cooperation with the Konrad Adenauer Foundation.

The researches show that citizens’ perception of EU as North Macedonia’s greatest ally has decreased from 43.2% in 2019 to 13.1% in 2021. At the same time, the percentage of respondents who refused to give an answer to this question has also increased – from 1.3% in 2020 to 17.6% in 2021. Most of those who have replied (17.1%) have said that they see the USA as North Macedonia’s greatest ally.

More than one-third of the respondents (35%) aren’t aware and they don’t recognize the biggest donor of financial support for country’s development. The percentage of people who are recognizing the EU as the biggest donor has decreased. so in 2021 this percentage was 21.6% unlike the year before, when it was twice as big.

More than half of the respondents, 56%, are supporting a closer alliance between the current partners from the Open Balkans Initiative as part of the EU integration process.

The research encompasses the people’s perception regarding the areas of compromise with Bulgaria, and according to the findings, the majority of people consider that North Macedonia mustn’t accept Bulgaria’s demands related to revisions of history (71%), the language (79%) and the position of the Bulgarian minority in our country (65.4%).

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