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Euro skeptics gaining support, new poll shows

[ 2011-11-23 10:42]     字号 [] [] []  
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Nearly half of all Britons support Euro skeptics in a new poll as the eurozone debt crisis shifted from one European capital to another.

According to a Harris poll for the British newspaper Metro, 40 percent of Britons believe that Britain would be better off if it left the European Union. Nine out of 10 are concerned about the effect the euro crisis is having on the British economy.

As the eurozone debt crisis spreads and gets worse, there are also fears that the eurozone might break up.

Spain's Socialists became the fifth government on Sunday in the 17-nation single currency area to be toppled by the debt crisis this year. Portugal, Ireland, Italy and Greece went before.

In the survey, which was published on Monday, seven out of 10 Britons said they had followed the debt crisis in the news.

And 70 percent believe the British economy would have been affected more severely if the nation had adopted the euro.

The poll, which asked whether leaving the European Union would have a positive effect on the economy, was conducted online among 1,031 people over the age of 16 in Britain.

Nicola Casarini, research fellow at the EU Institute for Security Studies, told China Daily that "it is a poll done for political reasons and to show support to the growing numbers of Tory euro skeptics in the parliament".

"The euro crisis is a very serious matter, with the potential to make Europe implode. At the same time, it is a great opportunity to advance the European integration process by giving Europe a truly economic and political governance- it all depends, however, on the politicians in power," Casarini said.

Nigel Farage, leader of anti-EU grouping United Kingdom Independence Party, hailed the poll as the "center ground of British public opinion".

Farage said "the only people who will be surprised by these figures are the leadership of the three main parties".

However, Michael Heseltine, former deputy prime minister now serving as an adviser to David Cameron on economic growth, said on Sunday he still believes Britain's future lay within the currency – despite predictions that it could collapse.

A UK withdrawal -or a closer alignment through euro membership favored by Heseltine and a small minority - would have a substantial effect on investment, politics and society, said Mindful Money, a UK-based social news and knowledge network.


1. What’s the ratio of people concerned about the effect of the euro crisis on the British economy?

2. What was the reason for the poll?

3. Who is Michael Heseltine?


1. 9 out of 10.

2. Political reasons and to show support to the growing numbers of Tory euro skeptics in the parliament.

3. Former deputy prime minister now serving as an adviser to David Cameron.

(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Euro skeptics gaining support, new poll shows

About the broadcaster:

Euro skeptics gaining support, new poll shows

Emily Cheng is an editor at China Daily. She was born in Sydney, Australia and graduated from the University of Sydney with a degree in Media, English Literature and Politics. She has worked in the media industry since starting university and this is the third time she has settled abroad - she interned with a magazine in Hong Kong 2007 and studied at the University of Leeds in 2009.