Estonian Residents Find Effects of EU Subsidies to Be Positive
Eestlased Eestis 12 Oct 2012  EWR
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Estonian Review (from BNS)
It appears from a poll carried out by the Estonian Finance Ministry that 87% of residents know that Estonia receives subsidies from the European Union and a large proportion of people find that their influence is positive for the Estonian economy.

Nearly half of Estonian residents know or have heard something about the EU structural subsidies. Similar to earlier years Estonians, people with higher education, and people with higher incomes were more informed about it than other groups.

People who knew about the subsidies were asked to name institutions in Estonia that mediate structural subsidies. Half of the respondents named the Agricultural Registers and Information Board (PRIA) and 23% Enterprise Estonia (EAS).

The respondents found that the main aim of the EU structural funds is to support sustainable activity of the economy, to improve competitiveness, and to raise the rate of employment. The overwhelming majority of the respondents found that the structural subsidies had a positive influence on the development of the Estonian economy. Only 5% of the persons informed about the euro-subsidies found that their influence is negative.

Over the years the number of persons informed about structural subsidies who regard the planning and distribution of euro funds to be clear and transparent has grown 7% to 46 points. The main concern in the distribution and planning of the subsidies, the respondents find, is poor distribution of information.

Estonian residents are quite sure that roads, railways, ports, regional development, as well as enterprise and innovation get support. The AHHAA Centre was one of the projects and activities the respondents mentioned the most frequently.

The overwhelming majority of the respondents believe that EU structural means were channelled into the right spheres, and only one fifth find that their choice was not right. They find that education should get more support than it does and 14% of the respondents find that state structures should get less support than they actually get.

A total of 3.40 billion euros had been assigned to Estonia for the development of regional policy in the years 2007-13.

The aim of the poll carried out on commission by the Finance Ministry was to establish information and bias of the population in the sphere of structural subsidies of the European Union. The poll was carried out by Faktum & Ariko in face-to-face interviews with 1012 persons aged from 18 to 74 answering to the question.
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