EU body blow: Brussels alarm bells as devastating study shows trust plummeting in France

Around six out of ten people in France questioned said they “no not trust” Brussels, the Jacques Delors Institute’s study indicated. The country’s lack of trust in the EU has jumped to 58 percent – a dramatic rise of 10 points since Emmanuel Macron’s election as president. Just 32 percent of participants said they could trust the EU, while the remaining 10 percent didn’t express a judgement.

The findings place France, ahead of the United Kingdom, as the country with the least faith in the bloc’s institutions.

On average, just 47 percent of participants from across the bloc said they couldn’t trust the EU, while 43 percent do.

The study was undertaken in November last year, but lead researcher Thierry Chopin said there was no reason to believe the EU’s management in the coronavirus pandemic has done much to boost support in the bloc.

He said: ‘There has been a continuous decline since the day after the election of Emmanuel Macron until there point where ’ambivalents’ have no become the majority in France.”

The report describes “ambivalent” as Europeans who are neither “supporters” of Brussels nor “eurosceptic” in their views.

It claims “ambivalents” are driven towards “eurosceptism” because of a lack of understanding about of the EU’s inner workings.

The media, schools and politicians are blamed because only 48 percent of “ambivalents” are said to know how the EU works, and 64 percent consider Brussels’ institutions to be too “distant”.

Mr Chopin added: “We have seen it before with the euro and the migrants.

“If under exceptional circumstances, like the COVID-19 crisis, the European leaders fail to display flawless unity and solidarity, then the ambivalents will be more and more tempted by the national withdrawal, convinced that the national state is the only one able to protect them.”

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Greece was the only country to display more eurosceptism, with 62 percent of respondents expressing little faith in Brussels.

But the country had more supporters than France, with 34 percent of respondents having trust in the bloc.

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