One in three Germans in favour of EU exit - survey

A British national receives her postal ballot paper for the upcoming EU referendum scheduled for June 23rd. PHOTO: AFP

BERLIN (REUTERS) - Almost a third of Germans would vote in favour of their country leaving the European Union, a survey published on Tuesday showed, indicating widespread scepticism towards Europe among citizens of the bloc's biggest member.

Historically ardent Europeans, disenchantment towards the EU has grown among Germans with many uneasy about the influx of more than one million migrants last year and angry at having to bail out Greece in the debt crisis.

The YouGov poll for Germany's Handelsblatt newspaper found that only 54 percent of Germans supported staying in the EU, while 29 percent would want to leave the bloc if a referendum were held on membership.

Britons will vote on June 23 over whether to remain part of the EU. Two polls published on Tuesday showed that those campaigning for Britain to leave the bloc had moved ahead.

More than half of those surveyed in Germany and Sweden wanted Britain to remain a member of the EU, against only 42 percent of French respondents.

If Britain were to vote for a Brexit, the majority of those surveyed think it would trigger a domino effect with other countries deciding to leave too, the survey, conducted between May 19 and 24, found.

Asked who profited the most from EU membership, respondents in Britain said Germany, compared to those in Germany and France who saw Greece as the biggest winner.

Thirty percent of British respondents said they believed their country came of badly thanks to EU membership compared to 36 percent of Germans who believed they got a raw deal.

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