The number of residents welcoming the euro increased in December
The euro adoption as of 1 January 2015 was positively or mostly positively assessed in December by almost two thirds — 60 per cent of respondents, as indicated in the representative public survey conducted in December, right before the euro adoption. Over a month, from November to December, the share of people positively assessing the euro grew by 7 p.p.
The greatest number of those supporting the euro adoption (71%) was among representatives aged 18–29; however the share of the population supporting the euro clearly exceeded the share of people doubting it, within all age groups.
The practical reasons for positive assessment were most often indicated, second — commonality with Europe. The fact, that there will no longer be a need to exchange money when travelling was indicated by 35 per cent of those surveyed, the single European currency meaning a common future and prospects in Europe — 22 per cent, the lack of a conversion tax when paying in euro area countries — 14 per cent, and that the euro will ensure the country’s economic stability and growth — 12 per cent.
Over a month, the reasons for negative assessment significantly changed. Among those who sceptically assessed the euro adoption, the number of those who indicated rising prices decreased from 49 to 35 per cent, but the number of those who based their sceptical assessment on the loss of the national currency, as a characteristic trait of the country, increased from 26 to 31 per cent.
As in the survey performed a month ago, nine out of ten respondents claimed that they are very well or well enough informed on the euro adoption.
The surveys also revealed that recognition of euro cash increased over the month. Although the share of those who has seen the euro remained unchanged (84%), the number of residents, able to name at least one euro banknote security feature, increased by 16 per cent (to 62%).
A large share of Lithuania’s population (96%) knew that in Lithuania it will be possible to exchange litas to euro free of charge. 94 per cent of people indicated that they know the official litas and euro exchange rate.
In answering the question as to who they would trust most in informing on the euro adoption, most (34%) of respondents indicated the Bank of Lithuania, second — the media (31%) and comments from independent analysts and financiers (6%) and other sources.
In December, the residents were also asked what influence, in their opinion, the euro adoption will have on wages and social benefits. According to the survey, 30 per cent of residents indicated that after the euro adoption wages will increase, 12 per cent claimed that they will decrease, while 52 per cent — that they do not expect the euro to influence wages. Every fifth person expects an increase with the euro in social benefits, every tenth — a decrease.
The public opinion on the euro survey was performed on 1–23 December 2014, using the Omnibus method. 1,003 people in Lithuania, aged 18 and older, were surveyed. The survey was conducted by the sociological research company BERENT Research Baltic. More detailed survey results may be found on the Bank of Lithuania’s website (1.2 MB ).