The share of Bulgarians who prefer an alliance with NATO and the EU to an alliance with Russia and Belarus is increasing. This is shown by the data from a nationally representative survey of public opinion on the initiative of the Open Society Institute – Sofia (OSIS), conducted in July 2023.

Against the background of the looming new division in Europe nearly a year and a half after the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, approximately twice as many Bulgarians would prefer the country to be in alliance with NATO and the EU than there are those who would choose an alliance with Russia.

Nearly 45% of the respondents state that Bulgaria should position itself in an alliance with the NATO and EU countries in the event of a new division in Europe similar to that of the Cold War era. 22% of those asked are in favor of an alliance with countries such as Russia and Belarus. Nearly 4% would prefer neutrality/independence, and 1% would prefer independence/defending national interests. People who cannot judge or do not answer the question are close to 30%.

The data compared to last year 2022 show an increase in the share of supporters of an alliance with the EU and NATO by 6% – from 39% in June 2022 to 45% in July 2023.

The share of supporters of Russia and Belarus decreased, but slightly – by 1% from 23% last year to 22% this year.

The cited data are from a nationally representative survey of public opinion, conducted among the adult population of the country in the period July 9-17, 2023, using the method of direct standardized face-to-face interview. The respondents were selected through a two-stage stratified sample by region and type of settlement with a quota based on gender and age. 1003 effective interviews were conducted. The maximum stochastic error at 95% guaranteed probability and at 50% share is ±3.1%.

The research was carried out in the field by the Trend agency on the order of the “Open Society Institute – Sofia” Foundation with the support of the Active Citizens Bulgaria Fund. Funding for the Active Citizens Fund has been provided by Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein under the EEA Financial Mechanism 2014-2021.