Thursday

21st Jan 2021

Merkel surprisingly popular in Spain

  • As popular in Spain as at home: German Chancellor Angela Merkel. (Photo: consilium.europa.eu)

Half of Spaniards appreciate German Chancellor Angela Merkel's leadership in the euro-crisis, while blaming their own politicians for the economic gloom and unemployment, a survey shows.

The survey was published on Tuesday (18 September) by Cicero Group, an international consultancy, and was carried out on a sample of 1,000 Spanish citizens from various social backgrounds.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

Asked who is showing the best leadership during the euro-crisis, 50 percent of respondents said Merkel - the queen of EU-demanded austerity programmes in troubled countries,

French President Francois Hollande came in second, at 11 percent, while Spain's own Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy received only three percent support.

EU commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso is seen as a competent leader by two percent of the Spaniards, while EU council chief Herman Van Rompuy and British PM David Cameron came in last, at one percent.

Merkel's high popularity rate is consistent with what Spaniards believe has caused the severe economic crisis they are in: 84 percent blame their own politicians for it, while 70 percent say it was the Spanish banks' fault. Only 18 percent blamed the EU or being a member of the eurozone.

Over half of respondents believe both their government and the Spanish banks will need to ask for more bailout money in the near future. Spain has been granted a €100 billion bailout for its banking sector, but deepening recession combined with the highest unemployment rate in the EU and dwindling tax revenues are likely to force it to ask for another one.

Asked what measures the government should take to fix the economy, a quarter of Spaniards said tax cuts, but almost one in five admitted there are no "quick fixes" at all.

A large majority (64%) endorse deeper EU integration as a way out of the crisis and even more (70%) want Spain to stay in the eurozone. But they are also realistic to the prospects of a Spanish exit, with 46 percent saying the currency would survive even if Spain was forced to leave.

Spain in wait-and-see mode as recession worsens

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy on Tuesday said his government has not yet taken a decision on asking for European help in refinancing its debt, pending a key meeting of the European Central Bank next week.

Anti-austerity protests in Spain turn violent

Protesters clashed with riot police on the streets of Madrid on Tuesday, as Spain braces itself for a fresh round of spending cuts linked to a potential bailout.

Merkel challenger urges more time for Greece

The centre-left's candidate to the German chancellery in 2013, ex-finance minister Peer Steinbrueck has criticised Merkel for not telling Germans the "truth" about Greece.

Vietnam jails journalist critical of EU trade deal

A journalist who had demanded the EU postpone its trade deal with Vietnam until human rights improved has been sentenced to 15 years in jail. The EU Commission says it first needs to conduct a detailed analysis before responding.

News in Brief

  1. Hungary gives initial ok for UK and Russian vaccines
  2. Russia files for Sputnik vaccine registration in EU
  3. Destruction and three deaths in Madrid explosion
  4. Liberals kick out Lithuanian MEP for homophobic jibes
  5. Air pollution killing thousands of Europeans a year
  6. First migrant tragedy of 2021 claims 43 lives
  7. Train revival needed to meet EU climate goals
  8. NGOs shame Monaco for persecuting UK whistleblower

Budget deal struck, with Hungary threat still hanging

Ultimately, the European Parliament managed to squeeze an extra €16bn in total - which will be financed with competition fines the EU Commission hands out over the next seven years, plus reallocations within the budget.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. UNESDAEU Code of Conduct can showcase PPPs delivering healthier more sustainable society
  2. CESIKlaus Heeger and Romain Wolff re-elected Secretary General and President of independent trade unions in Europe (CESI)
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersWomen benefit in the digitalised labour market
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersReport: The prevalence of men who use internet forums characterised by misogyny
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersJoin the Nordic climate debate on 17 November!
  6. UNESDAMaking healthier diets the easy choice

Latest News

  1. US returns to climate deal and WHO, as EU 'rejoices'
  2. Big tech: From Trump's best friend to censorship machine?
  3. Turkish minister in Brussels to discuss new migrant deal
  4. EU leaders to discuss vaccine certificates
  5. On Erdoğan and Europe's 'ontological' choice
  6. MEPs call to halt Russia pipeline over Navalny arrest
  7. EU targets vaccinating 70% of adults by summer
  8. Portugal pushes to start delayed 'future EU' conference

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us