Mood in eastern Germany sinks
24 September 2004 , HAMBURG - Germans in the former communist east of the country believe they are more disadvantaged than they have been since unification in 1990, an opinion poll showed.
24 September 2004
HAMBURG - Germans in the former communist east of the country believe they are more disadvantaged than they have been since unification in 1990, an opinion poll showed.
Almost one in three (30 percent) see themselves as disadvantaged, the poll for Der Spiegel news magazine showed.
A total of 44 percent - more than ever before in eastern Germany - say their financial position is bad or has worsened.
The TNS Infratest institute poll showed that almost 15 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall hopes of a swift improvement are dwindling.
Almost 60 percent believe it will be more than 10 years before standards of living are equal in east and west. That's double the number who gave the same response to the question in a similar poll in October 1993, the poll showed.
The views are in stark contrast to opinions in the years following the collapse of the former communist regime when east Germans were confident the western political system would improve their lives.
However most east Germans do not want a return to the old regime. Sixty percent said a state which encourages individual initiative was better than the former communist system.
Subject: German news