. ..In a sense, Prime Minister Costas Simitis’s resurrection at the recent party congress gives him a second chance that he cannot afford to miss. For at a time when ideological differences and political tensions have faded, what the average citizen is interested in is efficient governance and effective solutions to chronic problems. This is the wager that the present government has to take… In order to succeed in this, Simitis has to show that he has changed his approach on a number of crucial issues. He can no longer invoke party dissent as an excuse for poor government performance. Now that the party congress has strengthened his hand over party critics, Simitis clearly has to embark on specific actions: First, to use the government reshuffle to change a large number of figures, which will not only lend his government a different, more appealing image to the average voter but also demonstrate that PASOK still has the reserves to overcome an unfavorable climate, as in 1996. The second is to immediately begin promoting substantial and viable solutions to a series of crucial problems such as social security reform. The outcome will not only prove the reliability and viability of the government but also determine the country’s ability to adapt effectively, and in time, to the radically new landscape shaped by the introduction of the euro currency.

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