New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis has told CNN that Greece will be a “positive surprise” over the next two to three years.
Mitsotakis’ interview, given during his visit to New York City, to CNN’s Julia Chatterley, was broadcast Monday.
Mitsotakis, whose party leads the ruling SYRIZA in most polls by double digits, said investors should trust Greece. He noted that Greek companies have some 12 billion euros ($13.5 billion) deposited abroad and called on Greek businesses to support his efforts by repatriating at least some of that money.
Mitsotakis is a strong favorite to win the next election, which will take place in October, at the latest, and quite possibly earlier.
He told CNN that Greeks feel especially pressured by excessive taxation and dwelt at some length on his plan to cut taxes both for households and enterprises, adding that Greece cannot go back to a period where growth mainly helped businessmen with the proper connections.
Mitsotakis’ priority is to reduce corporate tax to 20 percent, especially for small and medium enterprises, and to reduce the property tax by 30 percent within two years. This will be a relief for the middle class and an incentive for more investments by foreigners now discouraged by high taxation.