NEWS

Eurasia Group: Tsipras likely to move up national elections to late May, ND to win absolute majority

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Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is likely to survive a vote of confidence after his nationalist coalition partner quit because of its opposition to the Prespes accord, risk consultancy Eurasia Group has said, rating the probability at 60 percent.

A Eurasia Group note released on Monday said that late May is the earliest plausible date for parliamentary elections, adding that the main conservative opposition New Democracy party is expected to win an absolute majority.

In its analysis on Wednesday’s confidence vote, Eurasia Group said four MPs from Panos Kammenos’s Independent Greeks (ANEL) party are likely to side with the government.

“We also continue to expect the vote to ratify the Prespes agreement to be approved later this month, also by a narrow margin,” it said.

The deal was ratified last week by lawmakers in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Meanwhile, Eurasia Group described Kammenos’s departure from the SYRIZA-led coalition as “an opportunity for Tsipras to rid his government of ANEL’s nationalist flair and to appeal to moderate and centrist voters” ahead of national elections which are formally scheduled to take place no later than October.

However, Eurasia Group said the leftist premier is likely to bring parliamentary elections forward to late May.

“Doing so could help SYRIZA cut its losses in light of its declining support. The government also calculates that holding parliamentary elections in conjunction with local and European elections will give voters other avenues to air their discontent with the government,” it said.

Eurasia Group added that Kyriakos Mitsotakis’s New Democracy party is likely to win an absolute majority.

“Irrespective of timing, we think main opposition New Democracy led by Kyriakos Mitsotakis will win the next election with an absolute majority,” it said.