Research has shown that 71 per cent of Maltese intend to cast their vote in next month’s European Parliament elections. The figure puts us slightly higher than the overall EU average of 67 per cent.
The survey – carried out by Eurobarometer – found that Maltese were considerably better informed about the elections than their EU counterparts. For example, 73 per cent of Maltese knew the elections will be held between May 23-26, compared to only 38 per cent of other EU citizens.
The survey also asked people what is important to them now, compared to six months ago. The previous survey – which was carried out in September 2018 - showed dramatic changes from the answers given in February and March.
While immigration is still the main concern at 72 per cent, its importance has dropped four percentage points. The worry over climate change increased by 11 per cent in importance, with half of people now saying it needs to be addressed urgently.
The need to promote human rights and democracy was given the same level of priority in peoples minds as it had done in September, while the fight against terrorism dropped from 49 per cent to 34 per cent.
The Eurobarometer also asked people how they felt about the European Parliament as a whole. The survey found that 31 per cent of Maltese believe it has strengthened over the years, compared with 21 per cent across the EU.
It also found that many Maltese are happy being part of the EU since 2004, with 67 per cent saying membership is a good thing and 91 per cent saying the country had benefitted. This is a large leap when compared to the EU average of 68 per cent.
And finally, the survey revealed that the chances of a ‘Mexit’ are slim. If a vote on accession were held today, only 12 per cent of Maltese would vote to leave.