For 78% of EU citizens, the primary objective for Brexit negotiations should be to protect the interests of the remaining EU27, while 22% want the focus to be on building a new economic relationship with the UK, giving it special privileged conditions post-Brexit. These are the main findings of the opinion poll on Brexit conducted by the polling institute Red C Research for the EPP Group that were presented today by the EPP Group Chairman, Manfred Weber, at the Bureau meeting of the Group in Wicklow (Ireland).
For those EU citizens asked, the priorities for the negotiations should be:
- to protect the future economies of the remaining EU Member States (92% of EU citizens asked)
- to enhance the financial markets in the remaining EU27 Member States in order to ensure financial stablity (91%)
- to focus on the longer term interests of the remaining EU27 states, rather than on short-term economic gains (89%)
- to ensure that the UK pays any outstanding financial obligations to the EU (88%)
- to ensure that there is no introduction of second class EU citizens (87%)
- to protect the rights of EU citizens who are living in the UK (86%)
“The EPP Group has always made it clear that our priority in the negotiations with the UK on Brexit was to defend the interests of EU citizens. The results of the opinion poll show that a large majority of EU citizens support this approach. This reinforces the position we took at an early stage. In early 2019, the European Parliament will have the huge responsibility of saying Yes or No to the divorce agreement with the UK. We are the only institution directly elected by the European citizens. When examining the conditions of Brexit, our first priority will always be to secure a good future for them”, said Manfred Weber.