Policy paper 222

They Love Me, They Love Me Not, They Love Me a Little: Public Opinion and the European Union in the Visegrad Countries

The following analysis of public opinion in the Visegrad countries since their entry into the European Union brings into relief contrasting developments and situations.

Poles, who were deeply concerned about the prospect of EU membership at the time of their accession, display today a high degree of satisfaction.
Hungarians, whose erstwhile europhilia had temporarily diminished, in recent years seem to have developed once again a predilection for the European project.
Czechs, while pragmatically aware of the need for the EU, remain particularly cautious.
Slovaks, who broadly recognise that membership in the EU has brought them tangible benefits, are more guarded than they were eight or ten years ago in their pro-European sentiments.
In these countries, alongside the more or less favourable opinions expressed today, attitudes towards the EU remain characterised by anxieties which, at least in part, have deep historical roots. This is arguably one of the causes of the suspicions of and resistance to common European projects, particularly when it comes to migration policy.