Poles value EU membership highly, but are wary due to biased treatment

Poles remain strongly supportive of the country’s presence in the European Union, valuing EU funds and open borders. However, they do feel like they are treated unequally compared to other nations of united Europe, according to the IBRiS survey for the “Rzeczpospolita” daily.

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The survey asked respondents about the most important advantages and disadvantages of EU membership. The respondents could choose more than one answer.

The poll published on Wednesday shows that the perceived greatest advantage is receiving EU funds (68 percent of those asked). The second are open borders (58 percent), followed by increased security for Poland (34 percent) and the possibility of education outside the country (23 percent).

In the eyes of those surveyed, the main disadvantage of EU membership is that countries are not treated equally. This was declared by 33 percent of respondents - this factor has fallen over the year by 7 percentage points.

Over the course of the year, the number of people who perceived Poland as a country of cheap labor have increased (30 percent of those polled, 4 pp. more than last year). On the other hand fewer people believe that the biggest drawback of staying in the EU is the imposition of EU laws that Poland must obey (25 percent of respondents, a decrease by 4 pp. last year). Some 9 percent of those polled believe that the greatest problem of their presence in the EU is emigration outside Poland.

All in all, however, 42 percent of respondents indicated that the advantages outweigh the disadvantages, while 14 percent pointed out that the advantages and disadvantages are counterbalancing each other. There are few eurosceptics, among whom 5 percent claimed that the disadvantages “definitely” outweigh the advantages, another 5 percent stated they are “quite” dominant.

The IBRiS poll for “Rzeczpospolita” was carried out using the Computer-Assisted Telephone Interviews (CATI) method on September 10-11, 2021 on a group of 1,100 respondents.