Most Azerbaijanis see relations with EU as good, generally optimistic about their lives, survey says

Baku: Most Azerbaijanis feel that the relations between their country and the European Union are good.

This is one of the key findings of the recently released Autumn 2013 EU Neighbourhood Barometer for Azerbaijan, conducted in the framework of an EU-funded opinion polling project for the Neighbourhood, APA reports quoting enpi-info.eu.

The survey, based on 974 interviews conducted in December 2013-January 2014, finds that 46% of people asked feel the EU is an important partner, with 45% believing the EU and Azerbaijan share sufficient common values to be able to cooperate. Almost half of those polled (also 48%) feel the EU brings peace and stability in the region.

The majority of respondents (56%) felt the EU had good relations with their country (compared to 47% in the ENPI East region), while merely 16% felt they were bad. More than three quarters of those polled (77%) saw the EU in a positive (48%) or neutral (29%) light, compared to 7% for whom it conjured up a negative image.

The poll has revealed a relatively low level of trust Azerbaijani have in international institutions. The EU tops the list (trusted by 42%), followed by the UN (27%) and the NATO (25%).

The majority of those questioned (62%) were generally optimistic about their lives, with the degree of satisfaction rising the younger and more educated respondents were.

The younger and more educated were less critical than other groups regarding the direction in which the country was going. More than half of respondents (53%) were optimistic about the chances that the economic situation in the country will improve in the next twelve months.

The majority of respondents were satisfied with the way democracy works in Azerbaijan (65%, compared to 29% on average in other Eastern Partnership countries).

Fifty two per cent of those asked agreed enough information was available about the EU, while 45% considered that it was easy to understand.

SOURCE: AZERI PRESS NEWS AGENCY

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