Many EU citizens won't vote in Czechia: Which nationalities are most represented?

Voters from EU countries can vote with permanent or temporary residence in Czechia, however, many citizens of these nations won't go to the polls.


Written by ČTK Published on 27.05.2024 11:26:00 (updated on 27.05.2024) Reading time: 2 minutes

Citizens of other EU countries residing in Czechia who register on the electoral rolls before April 30 can vote for Czech MEPs in the European Parliament (EP) elections. However, according to the Interior Ministry, many of these foreigners, estimated to be around 230,000, have not exercised this right, reports ČTK.

For instance, in the central district of Brno, only 49 out of the 17,000 foreign residents did so, while 26 did in Olomouc, central Moravia, the sixth largest town in Czechia.

In the EU elections in the Czech Republic, voters from other EU countries can vote if they have permanent or temporary residence in Czechia since at least April 24 and have been registered by the municipal authority as voters.

The European Parliament (EP) elections will take place on June 7 and June 8 in Czechia. Out of 705 members, 21 Czech EP members (MEPs) will be elected to the EU’s largest legislative body (though this number will rise to 720 after the 2024 election).

Those not on the voter list since the last Euro elections in 2019 had to apply no later than April 28. Additionally, they had to sign an affidavit confirming that they would only vote in the Czech Republic. Those who violate this rule could face a fine of up to CZK 10,000.

Pavel Litavec, a representative of the town hall in Brno’s northern district, which has the second highest number of foreigners, nearly 8,000 residents, stated that only 41 have registered for this year’s European elections. Nineteen of them applied for the first time this year.

With the exception of Slovaks, the main group of foreigners in Brno is made up of people who do not vote in the EU elections. These are Ukrainians, Vietnamese and Russians.

The Olomouc City Hall has registered 26 citizens of EU member states who have expressed their interest to vote for Czech candidates for the European Parliament in the town, its spokeswoman told ČTK.

According to the quarterly migration report from the Interior Ministry, there were a total of 1.03 million registered foreigners in the Czech Republic by the end of March. Among them, 338,500 held temporary residence permits, while 355,005 held permanent residence permits.

In addition, 338,736 foreigners were residing in Czechia under temporary protection registration, primarily Ukrainians who had fled the Russian invasion. Overall, 800,000 non-EU foreigners legally in the Czech Republic did not have the chance to vote in the European Parliament elections.

Among EU countries, Czechia had the highest number of Slovaks, approximately 120,000. Romanians formed the second-largest community, with about 21,000 people. Bulgarians and Poles each numbered around 18,000, Germans 13,000, and Hungarians 11,300.

Will you vote in the upcoming EU elections?

Yes, I am an EU citizen and I will vote. 39 %
No, I am not an EU citizen and I'm unable to vote. 26 %
No, I'm an EU citizen and did not register to vote. 35 %
109 readers voted on this poll. Voting is open
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