The messenger logo

NDI Polls Reveal People Concerned More with Social Problems than Occupation

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Wednesday, January 17
(TBILISI)--The most recent poll by the US National Democratic Institution (NDI) reveal that the Georgian people are more concerned with unemployment, high prices, poverty, pensions and the lack of relevant medical treatment than with the Russia’s occupation of 20 percent of the Georgian historic land.

In the list of the top state problems the territorial issue takes the sixth position.

72 percent of Georgians approve of joining the EU and 64 percent support the NATO membership based on the survey.

Majority, 41 percent of Georgians assess Russia’s military as stronger than that of the United States, while 36 percent believe the US to be stronger.

Thirty-nine percent of Georgians believe that the country is taking the wrong route, surpassing those who think the country is going to the right direction (26 percent) or staying the same (32 percent) for the first time in a year.

Employment remains the number one national issue, while roads and pollution of the environment continue to be a priority on the local level.

Environmental concerns rank high in Tbilisi where it is the number one local issue.

“At a time when the government is eliminating the environmental ministry as a stand-alone institution, Georgian citizens are demanding that resources and policies for environmental improvement not to be neglected,” said Laura Thornton.

Sixty percent of respondents believe Georgian television spreads misinformation, 51 percent believes the problem also exists in online media and 43 percent in print media.

“This is a troubling revelation and part of a global trend of distrust in journalism and news sources,” said Thornton. “Efforts are urgently needed to strengthen journalistic integrity and standards, monitor and implement checks on disinformation, and build reliable news sources for the Georgian public.”

NDI intends to release the political section of the survey on Thursday.

The survey results reflect data collected from November 29 to December 19, through 2,298 face-to-face interviews with a nationwide representative sample (excluding occupied territories). The average margin of error is +/- 1,9%.

The NDI’s survey work is funded with UK aid from the British people. The poll was carried out by CRRC Georgia.