The United States and China win, everyone else loses with Brussels sanctions

According to the vast majority of Hungarians, the United States and China are the clear winners, while all the other actors – spearheaded by the European Union and our country – are the losers of Brussels sanctions policy and the economic effects of the sanctions. Furthermore, 56 percent of those surveyed believe that none of the parties can emerge victorious from the armed conflict in the end, according to a September survey by Századvég. The survey mapped public attitudes towards the likely outcome of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict and the effects of war and sanctions policy.

None of the parties can emerge victorious from the war

In the light of the battlefield events of the past six months, as well as the sanction-focused policy of Brussels and the Russian response thereto, it can be stated that the parties involved in the Russian-Ukrainian war are moving further and further away from an agreement and a peaceful settlement of the conflict. The poll shows that

although a higher proportion of respondents expect Russia than Ukraine to win the armed conflict (28 percent and 10 percent, respectively), 56 percent of those surveyed believe that neither side can emerge victorious from the war.

This explains, among other things, that a significant majority of Hungarians – as the previous analyses of Századvég  have established  – see the solution in starting peace negotiations as soon as possible and reaching a compromise, rather than introducing and maintaining punitive measures leading to further escalation of the conflict.


Europe loses, the United States and China win with the sanctions

In the wake of the economic consequences of the Russian-Ukrainian war and the sanctions strategy of Brussels, Europe is struggling with an energy crisis and war inflation. At the same time, some non-European countries have benefited in some respects from the war. Due to Brussels sanctions, China and India can purchase Russian energy carriers cheaper, while the United States gains a new energy export market and can be an attractive destination for European businesses wishing to relocate their productions and investment from Europe for a mor secure energy supply. The effects of these processes are also reflected in public opinions, as

the vast majority of Hungarians believe that the United States and China are the winners rather than the losers of the economic consequences of the armed conflict in question and the sanctions (71 percent and 68 percent, respectively). On the other hand, more than four-fifths of the respondents consider the European Union and Hungary to be victims of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict and the sanctions policy (81 percent and 87 percent, respectively).

Interestingly, a noticeably smaller proportion of those surveyed consider Russia to be the loser of the sanctions (52 percent), even though the punitive measures taken in Brussels were directed against this country.


Based on the survey, it can be concluded that

84 percent of Hungarians also consider Ukraine to be the loser of the mentioned economic consequences and sanctions.

This can be explained by the fact that the primary goal of Brussels sanctions measures was to curb Russia’s military ambitions and to enforce peace, but the introduced and planned measures had the opposite effect, i.e., they led to the prolongation of the armed conflict. Seeing the failure of Brussels punitive measures and the move away from the possibility of a compromise, the Hungarian public also see Ukraine as the loser of these developments.


CATI method, n=1000, among the adult Hungarian population, data collection: September 2022

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