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Attitude of the population of Ukraine to Russia and the population of Russia to Ukraine, September 2020

The press release contains the results of a joint project of the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology and the Russian non-governmental research organization "Levada-Center", which has been carried out since 2008 (Autonomous non-profit organization "Levada-Center" is forcibly entered in the register of non-profit organizations of Russia, performing the functions of a foreign agent. Statement of the director of "Levada-Center", who does not agree with this decision, see here.)

Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) From 12 to 16 September 2020, KIIS conducted a CATI (computer-assisted telephone interviews) survey based on a random sample of mobile phone numbers. The sample is representative for the adult population (18 years and elder) of Ukraine. The sample does not include territories that are temporarily not controlled by the authorities of Ukraine - the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, some districts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions. 2000 interviews were conducted during the survey.

  The statistical error of the sample (with a probability of 0.95 and taking into account the design effect of 1.1) does not exceed: 2.2% for indicators close to 50%, 2.1% - for indicators close to 25%, 1.4% - for indicators close to 10%.

 "Levada-Center" conducted a survey on a representative sample of the population of Russia, 1601 people aged 18 and elder, in the period from 20 to 26 August 2020 by personal interview.

The statistical error in the sample of 1601 persons (with a probability of 0.95) does not exceed: 3.4% for indicators close to 50%, 2.9% - for indicators close to 25% / 75%, 2.0% - for indicators close to 10% / 90%, and 1.5% - for indicators close to 5% / 95%

 

During the research, Ukrainians were as before asked the question “What is your attitude toward Russia in general now? ”And to Russians “What is your attitude toward Ukraine in general now?

During the entire observation period (except September 2019), Ukrainians treated Russia better than Russians treated Ukraine (see Graph 1). In September 2019, Russians 'attitude toward Ukraine was somewhat better, possibly due to the expectation that the new Ukrainian government would change Ukrainians' attitude toward Russia. After the annexation of Crimea and the start of military actions in Donbass, there was a sharp decline in the positive attitude of Ukrainians to Russia (from 90% to 30%), but after the end of active hostilities, the attitude of Ukrainians to Russia again improved somewhat. And now, in August-September 2020, Ukrainians 'attitude toward Russia has deteriorated again, and Russians' attitude toward Ukraine has improved somewhat, and for the second time in the history of observations, Russians treat Ukraine better than Ukrainians treat Russia (but the difference is minimal). However, this time the surveys are not completely equivalent, because in Russia the research was conducted by face-to-face interview, and in Ukraine - by telephone survey, this issue needs further study.

 

Graph 1. Dynamics of good attitude of the Ukrainian population to Russia and Russian to Ukraine

 

  • In Ukraine in September 2020, 42% of Ukrainians treated Russia well or very well, 42% also had a bad or very bad attitude, and 16% were undecided. In Russia, 48% of the population treated Ukraine well or very well, 43% had a bad or very bad attitude, 9% were undecided. 
  • The attitude of Ukrainians to Russia significantly depends on the region: in the West 30% have a positive attitude towards Russia, in the Center - 38%, in the South - 52%, in the East - 56%. The majority of those who have a negative attitude towards Russia are concentrated in the Western region (56%), the least in the Eastern region (27%) (see table 2).   

 

 

Dynamics of answers to question "How would you like to see Ukraine's relations with Russia?"

  • Compared to September 2019 and February 2020, the level of support for Ukraine's independence (the percentage of those who believe that Ukraine should be independent of Russia) remains the same - 90%, this indicator has not changed since 2014. The number of those who want closed borders with Russia is 39%, and the number of those who want independent relations, but without borders and customs, is 51%.
  • Compared to January 2020, the number of people wishing to close borders with Ukraine slightly increased in Russia (it was 26%, it became 30%) and the number of those who do not want visas and borders decreased (it was 56%, it became 51%). The number of those who want to unite into one state has hardly changed - 16%


Graph 2. What kind of relations with Russia do want in Ukraine?* 

 * The line on the graph “Ukraine and Russia must be independent” is the sum of the first two columns in Table 6, that is the percentage of those who want independence with borders and customs, and those who want independence but without borders and customs (see tables below).

 Comment by V. Paniotto, Director General of KIIS:

From time to time, we ask not only about the attitude towards Russia, but also separately about the attitude towards the Russians and the Russian leadership. The last such research was in February 2019. In general, 57% of Ukrainians had a positive attitude towards Russia at that time. At the same time, 77% of Ukrainians had a positive attitude towards Russians, while the attitude towards the Russian leadership was sharply negative and only 13% of Ukrainians had a positive attitude. The situation is the same with the attitude of Russians (Russian citizens) to Ukraine, in February 2019 only 34% of Russians were positive about Ukraine, 82% of Russians were positive about Ukrainians, and only 7% of Russians - positive about the leadership of Ukraine.

Thus, both in Ukraine and in Russia the positive attitude to the state is caused, first of all, by the positive attitude to the population.

 

Annex 1. Formulation of questions from the questionnaire 

 

How would you like to see Ukraine's relations with Russia? ONE ANSWER

 

Ukraine's relations with Russia should be the same as with other states - with closed borders, visas, customs 1
Ukraine and Russia must be independent but friendly states - with open borders, without visas and customs 2
Ukraine and Russia must unite into one state 3
DA/NR 9

 

 

 

What is your attitude toward Russia in general now?

very good 1  mostly bad 3 DIFFICULT TO ANSWER / REFUSE TO ANSWER 9
mostly good 2  Very bad 4

 

 

Annex 2. Composition of the regions of Ukraine 

 

Western macroregion - Volyn, Zakarpattia, Ivano-Frankivsk, Lviv, Rivne, Ternopil, Khmelnytskyi, Chernivtsi regions

 

Central macroregion – Kyiv city, Kyiv, Vinnytsia, Zhytomyr, Kirovohrad, Poltava, Sumy, Cherkasy, Chernihiv regions;

 

Southern macroregion - Dnipropetrovsk, Zaporizhzhia, Mykolaiv, Odesa, Kherson regions;

 

Eastern macroregion - Kharkiv, Donetsk, Luhansk region (districts controlled by Ukraine)

 

Annex 3.  TABLES

 

Table 1. What is your attitude towards Ukraine / Russia in general now?  

 

IN UKRAINE TO RUSSIA, treates, % IN RUSSIA TO UKRAINE, treates, %
Date very good / mostly good mostly bad / very bad DIFFICULT TO SAY TOTAL Date very good / mostly good mostly bad / very bad DIFFICULT TO SAY TOTAL
Apr.08 88 7 5 100 Mar.08 55 33 12 100
Sept.08 88 9 3 100 Sept.08 38 53 10 100
Feb.09 91 5 4 100 Jan.09 29 62 10 100
May.09 93 4 3 100 May.09 33 56 11 100
Oct.09 92 6 3 100 Sept.09 46 44 10 100
Mar.10 90 6 4 100 Mar.10 59 29 12 100
June.10 92 6 3 100 July.10 70 22 9 100
Oct.10 93 4 3 100 Oct.10 67 21 12 100
Nov.11 80 13 7 100 Sept.11 68 23 9 100
Feb.12 85 9 6 100 Jan.12 64 25 12 100
Sept.12 83 11 6 100 Sept.12 74 17 10 100
Feb.13 85 8 7 100 Feb.13 69 21 9 100
May.13 81 10 9 100 May.13 72 18 9 100
Nov.13 82 10 8 100 Sept.13 69 22 8 100
Feb.14 78 13 9 100 Jan.14 66 26 9 100
May.14 52 38 10 100 May.14 35 49 17 100
Sept.14 48 41 11 100 Sept.14 32 55 13 100
Dec.14 37 48 16 100 Jan. 15 24 63 13 100
Feb.15 34 51 15 100 Mar.15 31 56 13 100
May.15 30 56 14 100 May.15 26 59 14 100
Sept.15 34 53 13 100 Sept.15 33 56 11 100
Feb.16 36 47 13 100 Feb.16 27 59 14 100
May.16 42 43 15 100 May.16 39 47 13 100
Sept.16 40 46 14 100 Sept.16 26 56 17 100
Dec.16 40 47 13 100 Dec.16 34 54 13 100
Feb.17 39 46 15 100 Jan.17 34 54 13 100
May.17 44 37 19 100 May.17 26 59 15 100
Sept.17 37 46 17 100 Sept.17 32 53 15 100
Dec.17 42 39 19 100 Dec.17 28 56 17 100
Feb.18 45 38 18 100 Mar.18 33 55 12 100
Sept.18 48 32 19 100 Sept.18 33 56 12 100
Feb.19 57 27 17 100 Feb.19 34 55 10 100
Sept.19 54 35 11 100 Sept.19 56 31 13 100
Feb.20 54 33 13 100 Jan.20 41 47 12 100
Sept.20 42 42 16 100 Aug.20 48 43 9 100

 

 

Table 2. What is your attitude towards Russia in general now?

Distribution by regions, September 2020, %

  Ukraine as a whole, % Western Central Southern Eastern
Very good 8 4 5 11 14
Mostly good 34 26 32 41 41
Mostly bad 21 27 23 17 12
Very bad 21 28 24 13 15
DIFFICULT TO SAY / REFUSE TO ANSWER 16 14 15 18 17
TOTAL 100 100 100 100 100

 

 

Table 3. How would you like to see Ukraine's relations with Russia? 

 

  IN UKRAINE
Date They should be the same as with other states - with closed borders, visas, customs Ukraine and Russia should be independent but friendly states - with open borders, without visas and customs Ukraine and Russia must unite into one state Difficult to say Total
Apr.08 10 67 20 3 100
Sept.08 17 66 16 2 100
Feb.09 8 68 23 1 100
May.09 10 65 23 2 100
Oct.09 11 67 19 3 100
Mar.10 11 67 19 3 100
June.10 12 70 16 2 100
Oct.10 10 67 20 2 100
Nov.11 13 67 16 1 100
Feb.12 13 69 16 2 100
Sept.12 11 72 14 3 100
Feb.13 13 68 16 3 100
May.13 11 69 14 5 100
Nov.13 12 73 9 6 100
Feb.14 15 68 12 5 100
May.14 32 54 8 5 100
Sept.14 45 44 5 6 100
Dec.14 50 42 3 5 100
Feb.15 48 43 4 6 100
May.15 45 46 2 7 100
Sept.15 46 45 2 7 100
Feb.16 42 43 4 11 100
May.16 44 44 3 9 100
Sept.16 49 43 3 6 100
Dec.16 45 46 3 7 100
Feb.17 47 43 2 7 100
May.17 43 47 4 6 100
Sept.17 49 40 4 8 100
Dec.17 45 40 4 11 100
Feb.18 44 44 3 9 100
Sept.18 38 50 4 8 100
Feb.19 39 48 4 9 100
Sept.19 41 49 3 7 100
Feb.20 39 51 3 7 100
.2020 39 51 5 5 100

 

  IN RUSSIA
Date They should be the same as with other states - with closed borders, visas, customs Ukraine and Russia should be independent but friendly states - with open borders, without visas and customs Ukraine and Russia must unite into one state Difficult to say Total
Mar.08 19 56 19 6 100
Sept.08 24 52 13 11 100
Jan.09 29 51 12 8 100
May.09 25 55 14 6 100
Sept.09 25 55 13 7 100
Mar.10 25 55 14 6 100
July.10 17 64 13 6 100
Oct.10 16 60 18 6 100
Sept.11 16 63 14 6 100
Jan.12 16 61 16 8 100
Sept.12 14 60 20 6 100
Feb.13 13 64 18 6 100
May.13 19 58 15 8 100
Sept.13 23 55 16 6 100
Jan.14 19 59 16 6 100
May.14 28 54 12 6 100
Sept.14 26 62 7 5 100
Jan. 15 32 53 7 8 100
Mar.15 30 54 10 6 100
May.15 25 59 8 7 100
Sept.15 32 52 11 5 100
Feb.16 36 53 7 4 100
May.16 39 48 8 6 100
Sept.16 33 53 9 5 100
Dec.16 33 53 9 5 100
Jan.17 35 50 9 5 100
May.17 34 49 11 6 100
Sept.17 33 49 10 8 100
Dec.17 39 45 10 5 100
Mar.18 32 45 16 6 100
Sept.18 25 52 17 6 100
Feb.19 23 54 19 4 100
Sept.19 26 56 15 3 100
Jan.20 30 51 16 3 100

 

Table 4. How would you like to see Ukraine's relations with Russia? Distribution by regions, September 2020, % 

  Ukraine as a whole, % Western Central Southern Eastern
Ukraine's relations with Russia should be the same as with others 39 50 43 27 27
Ukraine and Russia must be independent but friendly states 51 41 47 62 62
Ukraine and Russia must unite into one state 5 3 3 7 7
DIFFICULT TO SAY 5 6 7 4 4
TOTAL 100 100 100 100 100

 

 

 

 

 


7.10.2020
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