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‘The worst is still to come’ for EU job crisis

Arjun Kharpal, special to CNBC.com
Tuesday, 23 Jul 2013 | 10:24 AM ET
Mario Proenca | Bloomberg | Getty

One in two people feel "the worst is still to come" for the job crisis in the European Union (EU), according to a survey released by the European Commission today.

Only 36 per cent of people surveyed thought the job crisis had reached its peak, while 55 per cent saw further turmoil ahead, according to the Eurobarometer, which surveyed 32,694 EU citizens.

Despite the EU's political and economic problems in the Union, 62 per cent of respondents said they still identified themselves as EU citizens. But less than half of Greeks and Cypriots felt like they were a part of the bloc, as their countries struggle with huge debt burdens and strict austerity programs.

"The economic crisis is intertwined with the political crisis and the public are questioning the legitimacy of the current system. Politics is still national in member states, but in places like Greece, people are turning against the austerity measures being imposed on them from the EU," Pawel Swidlicki, a research analyst at the Open Europe think tank, said.

"There is a backlash against the bailouts and austerity and this is reflected in the figures today."

Citizens also expressed concern over the political workings of the 28-nation bloc, with 67 per cent disagreeing with the statement, "my voice counts in the European Union", viewing the EU as remote from their everyday lives.

The euro was low down on the list of positive outcomes from the EU, with only 24 per cent of those surveyed saying the single currency was the bloc's best achievement. People from Slovenia, Slovakia and Luxembourg were the biggest euro fans, with 77 per cent of citizens from each country in favor of the single currency. The U.K. and Sweden were the most against, with 79 per cent of people from both countries opposed to it.


By CNBC's Arjun Kharpal: Follow him on Twitter @ArjunKharpal

Contact Europe: Economy

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