According to a survey conducted in September, 85% of the residents of Estonia consider their knowledge of practical issues related to the changeover to the euro as either good or sufficient. 23% of respondents said that they would like or need additional information.
In comparison to the previous survey, conducted in July, this self-determined level of knowledge has decreased slightly, by 4 percentage points.
Also slightly lower was knowledge of certain basic facts related to the changeover. In September, 74% of those surveyed were able to state the exact or almost the exact exchange rate; 84% were aware that the amount of kroons that can be exchanged for euros is unlimited; and 80% that banks will not charge fees for exchanging the currencies one month before and six months after the changeover. However, there was an increase in knowledge related to the fact that kroons in cash will still be able to be used for two weeks after the changeover (86%); that the Bank of Estonia will continue to exchange kroons for euros for an unlimited period was less widely known (54%).
The level of knowledge is similar among all population groups. Knowledge has decreased among people with low levels of education and increased among younger population groups.
The decrease in knowledge can be explained by timing: by September the issue was not as topical as in July, when the survey was conducted directly after the final decision on the exchange rate had been taken.
Information about the changeover to the euro has mainly been obtained from the media – television (86%), print media (75%) and radio (70%) – followed by friends and relatives (39%) and the Internet (27%).
The euro.eesti.ee website is known to 32% of respondents – 8% of whom have already used it, while 27% know about it but have not used it. 15% of respondents claim not to use the Internet.
The Fair Pricing Campaign which was launched in August has been visible to 73% of respondents. The main channels were TV, radio and print media.
Support for the adoption of the euro remains unchanged. In September, 51% of respondents supported and 43% opposed the changeover (compared to 52% and 44% in July). This difference remains within statistical error. Support was stronger than average among Estonians, as well as among residents with higher education and higher income.
Support for the adoption of the euro is primarily associated with travelling, simpler conducting of monetary affairs abroad and direct or indirect benefits for the Estonian economy.
Opposition to the changeover is mainly associated with the fear of an increase in prices and the cost of living, and the loss of the kroon as a symbol of identity. In September, a general price increase related to the euro was of concern to 68% of respondents. This fear is above average among the non-Estonian population (76%) and people with low incomes (80%). By comparison, in July such a price increase was expected by 74% of those surveyed.