Parliament Speaker Shalva Papuashvili Expresses Concern Over Declining EU Sentiment in Georgia, Urges EU to Fix It
By Liza Mchedlidze
Monday, September 18, 2023
Parliament Speaker Shalva Papuashvili expressed concern about the declining positive sentiment towards the European Union among the population of Georgia. He noted that this decline has been significant, amounting to an 11 percent drop in the past year. Papuashvili believes that the decrease in positive sentiment towards the EU is a reflection of the frustration felt by Georgian society. He attributes this frustration to the fact that Ukraine and Moldova were granted candidate status within the European Union while Georgia was not similarly recognized.
The Parliament Speaker criticized this 'wrong' decision, stating that it was not based on the individual merits of each country and that the credibility and trustworthiness of the European Union are now in question due to this decision.
He urged the EU to take corrective actions and demonstrate to the Georgian people that it remains committed and reliable in supporting their aspirations for closer European integration.
"One of the significant findings of this study is the declining positive sentiment towards the European Union among Georgia's population, which has dropped by 11 percent in the past year. I believe this decline reflects the frustration experienced by our society with the EU. In June of last year, the European Union made a political decision regarding three countries: Ukraine, which was granted candidate status despite being a country at war; Moldova, a country bordering a conflict zone; and Georgia
This decision was not based on the individual merits of each country; as such, it was considered a wrong political decision. Unfortunately, it led to disappointment within Georgian society and contributed to an 11 percent decrease in positive attitudes towards the European Union, which is a concerning trend. We hope the EU will take corrective actions.
The credibility and trustworthiness of the European Union is currently at stake due to this decision. The EU needs to demonstrate to the Georgian people that it remains committed and reliable in supporting their European aspirations," Shalva Papuashvili stated.