Europhilia Stronger than Bulgaria’s “NO”

• Despite the bitter feeling which is evident in the increase of the number of citizens who believe that “the EU’s
attitude towards the RNM is unfair, arrogant and blackmailing”, a record 67.3% of the respondents believe
that the membership of North Macedonia in the EU would be a good thing. This indicates that the majority
remains convinced that the country belongs to the European family, despite the difficulties in the accession
process. From a critical point of view, the result can also be interpreted as an indicator of an uncritical
attitude of the Macedonian citizens towards the European Union
• In a similar context, a record 70.4% of respondents believe that the EU membership would be a useful thing,
which is an indicator of the stability of the high support for the membership and which indirectly implies the
otherwise unarticulated expectations that the problem with the Bulgarian blockade will soon be resolved,
whereby the accession negotiations will begin.
• The number of citizens who believe that the EU’s attitude towards the country is unfair, arrogant and
blackmailing has increased dramatically, which is due to the disappointment after the expectations that the
country will officially start the membership negotiations despite the Bulgarian opposition. The Bulgarian
blockade dealt a severe blow to the narrative of the Macedonian government, which legitimized all the
difficult and unpopular decisions, such as the name change, with the “reward” in the form of starting the
negotiations.
• The political obstacles to the start of the accession negotiations with N. Macedonia do not seem to have
much influence on the citizens’ continued support for the EU. However, we interpret this as a consequence
of the belief that the political blockades will be resolved quickly. Should that not be the case, there is a high
probability that the public opinion will also change.

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