As the government struggles to conclude a bailout review amid growing tensions with creditors, opposition New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis has been underlining his party’s pro-reform credentials in talk with European officials.
In his talks on the sidelines of a summit of the European People’s Party in Brussels this week, Mitsotakis pressed his argument that Greece needs snap elections to sweep away the current leftist-led government and bring in a more reform-friendly administration, according to European officials who told Kathimerini that Mitsotakis “is seen as different.”
Mitsotakis insisted that an ND-led government would implement a frontloaded program to win back Greece’s credibility, would shun populism and would not be just a “verbal reformer,” one European source said.
The ND leader met with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, European Commissioner for the Euro Valdis Dombrovksis and European Monetary and Economic Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici, among others, and is said to have made a good impression.
His insistence on a commitment to reforms is said to have pleased EU officials who were taken aback last week by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras unilaterally announcing Christmas bonuses for pensioners. In their talks with Mitsotakis, certain EU officials described Tsipras’s behavior as “incomprehensible.”
Mitsotakis reiterated his call for snap elections, emphasizing that his party would provide the foundation for a reform-focused government.