ArmInfo. According to the Center for Integration Studies of the Eurasian Development Bank, from 76% to 94% of the population of the countries of the Eurasian Economic Union sees allies in the face of neighboring countries, especially Russia.
As the analysts of the Center note, citizens of the countries of the Union maintain close family and friendly ties. But there are other trends: the interest of citizens of the EAEU countries in the Russian education and culture is declining, and the Russian population, in turn, is increasingly showing closeness to other countries, including against foreign workers.
Answering a question about which countries, in the opinion of the respondents, are friendly and capable of supporting their country in a difficult moment, the majority, as in the last 5 years of observation, spoke in favor of the CIS region. The greatest trust in neighbors in the CIS region for the sixth year in a row expresses the population of Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan (in 2017 - 95, 94 and 90% respectively). At the same time, Russia continues to be a leader in the perception of all respondents as a friendly state: on average, 76% of all respondents named it as the most friendly country in the six countries studied. On the second place is Kazakhstan (31%), on the third - Belarus (21%). To date, we can state that the countries of the EAEU, as well as Tajikistan, demonstrate a high degree of mutual trust at the population level. This is an important prerequisite for the stability of the Union and its attractiveness for existing and potential member states.
In Russia, Belarus considers the most friendly foreign policy partners (61%) and Kazakhstan (54%). The third place was transferred from China to Armenia (almost 40% - growth by 4.5 pp). Also at 12 pp (up to 17%), the level of friendly perception of India also dropped. The growth of confidence of Russians is fixed in relation to Uzbekistan (by 4 percentage points, up to 26% - maximum for 6 years of observations), Moldova (by 5 percentage points, up to 21% is also the maximum) and Turkey (by 4 p. up to 7%).
The member states of the EAEU and Tajikistan are characterized by the highest density of mutual social ties in the world: from 51% to 80% (excluding Russia) of their population stated that they have constantly maintained ties with relatives, friends, colleagues from the countries of the CIS region. This is the highest level of social ties in the world. The highest rates in 2017 were recorded in Kyrgyzstan (80%), Armenia (79%) and Tajikistan (66%). In Russia, 31% of the population supports social ties in neighboring countries in the CIS region. This is also a very high figure, given the comparative size of the population.
However, the interest of citizens in obtaining education in the neighboring countries is decreasing. The population of the countries of the region most often prefers educational services to foreign countries, primarily the EU, than neighboring countries in the CIS region. This is typical first of all for Armenia, Moldova, Belarus and Russia.