Portugal and Belgium/Romania also champion civic engagement

Romania ranks first in the EU in terms of voting intention among young people for the June 9 European Parliament elections. A study published by the European Commission. 78% of the youth interviewed between 15 and 30 years of age say they will go to vote. This is the highest percentage recorded among the 27 EU countries, while the European average is 64%. It is worth noting that in some European countries young people can vote from the age of 16.

Romania is followed by Portugal at 77% and Belgium at 69%.

Photo credit: Eurobarometer

The share of potential voters is lower in Malta (47%), Latvia (46%) and Luxembourg (41%). In Bulgaria, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta and the Netherlands, more than one in five respondents said they would not vote even if they were eligible (21% to 31%).

One in two young Europeans surveyed (49%) say they have taken action to change society in the past year, such as signing a petition, attending a rally or sending a letter to a politician. In nine Member States, at least 50% of young people respond that they have taken an action in the past year to change society.

The highest share is found in Romania (57%), while the lowest is recorded in Cyprus (31%), Luxembourg (33%) and Sweden (34%).

Civic Engagement EurobarometerCivic Engagement Eurobarometer
Photo credit: Eurobarometer

The survey was conducted online in the context of the European elections from June 6-9, 2024. When young people in the EU were asked how aware they were of ways to get involved in the EU, 46% said they were aware of the EU. Elections. Almost a quarter (24%) are familiar with EU social media channels and websites – for example the European Youth Portal.

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Which politicians do young people follow on social media?

In this context, young people in Romania and other European countries should mention which politicians they follow on social media. According to analyzes carried out by journalists of the European project Enter But according to other published studies, the Chinese platform TikTok is an important source of information for young people in many European countries. Many politicians, inspired by Gen Z influencers, are trying to appeal to young voters, and those who are best represented have become politicians with extremist messages.

ENTR journalists searched for the most followed party leaders on Tiktok from Romania, Germany, France and Bulgaria and compiled a topic. While the leaders do not have TikTok accounts, we selected political group leaders from both houses of the National Parliament.

In Romania, the far right has won the list of most viewed party leaders on Tiktok. George Simian (AUR) has 413,000 followers and Diana Șosoacă (SOS), more than 271,000. Both are known for their Eurosceptic and anti-establishment rhetoric.

In France, Jordan Bartella, leader of the Rassemblement National party, has more than a million followers on TikTok and is the most followed party leader. His band is known for its anti-immigrant rhetoric and pro-Kremlin stance.

In Germany, Ulrich Siegmund, Alice Weidel and Dino Kruppla are the most watched in the Alternative for Deutschland (AfD). The trio has a combined total of over 710,000 followers. The AfD is known for its Euroscepticism and anti-immigration policies.

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