The euro crisis has hit the southern European nations surveyed (Greece, Italy and Spain) much harder than the northern (Britain, France and Germany) or eastern countries, (Poland and the Czech Republic). But it is Greece’s reputation, more than that of Italy and Spain, that has suffered the most in the eyes of the public. German Chancellor Angela Merkel receives the highest marks among leading European officials for her handling of the euro crisis, except in Greece. And Germans are among the most judgmental of Greece. The Spanish are the most critical of themselves while the Greeks are the least self-critical.
Germany is the most respected EU country among those nations surveyed. Roughly eight-in-ten people in France (84%), the Czech Republic (80%) and Poland (78%) hold a favorable view of Germany. The Greeks, however, are harshly critical of Germany. Only 21% have a positive view of Germany, while 78% have an unfavorable view. Berlin’s hard line in dealing with the euro crisis may have cost it some support among its fellow EU members. Germany’s favorability is down 10 points in Spain since 2011, down six points in France and Britain.
France is also held in high regard.