The main opposition New Democracy press office publicized the letter that leader Antonis Samaras sent to the EC, Eurogroup, ECB and IMF leaders. The letter, contains the positions of Antonis Samaras, as these have been expressed to the leaders of the EPP. The new letter is a part of an earlier letter sent to EPP leaders. Specifically, the new letter is missing the original piece, in which Mr. Samaras referred to the political developments following the announcement of the referendum by former prime minister George Papandreou, including a note on the February 19, 2012 elections contained in the previous version.
Antonis Samaras has refused to give a written guarantee that he would continue to do whatever it took to meet the terms of the bailout no matter who wins an election tentatively set for February 19. Samaras told the troika officials on Sunday that a verbal vow not to oppose existing reforms should suffice. But this has not satisfied Europe since analysts say he is doing this to win a full majority in the next national elections so he can reverse the reforms he disagrees with. Samaras, a Harvard-educated economist, has long opposed the tax hikes and spending cuts backed by PASOK and has said that pro-growth measures would be more effective.
Meanwhile a shocking report on New Europe said on Tuesday that when, in late October, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy agreed with the-then Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou to grant Greece the €110 billion mega-loan, the latter agreed, in return for the loan, to purchase military supplies from Germany and France, worth €10.5bn. (click here to read more: New Europe)
Senior ND officials said on Tuesday that the “letter will be accepted”, claiming that they have made relevant agreements with Europeans and interim Prime Minister Lucas Papademos.
Mr. Samaras is now waiting for a response from Mr. Papademos who is still in Brussels and Luxembourg.
The letter reads as follows:
Athens, November 23, 2011
As stated in the meeting of the three Party Leaders under the auspices of the President of the Hellenic Republic C. Papoulias: “it has been agreed upon that the task of the new Government will be to materialize the decisions taken at the European Council of October 26th 2011 and to implement the economic policies linked to those decisions”.
The new Prime Minister has already pledged to fulfill this task.
Nea Demokratia is committed to support the new Prime Minister.
Nea Demokratia is strongly committed to the success of fiscal consolidation and structural reforms, rebuilding market confidence and fostering economic growth.
Nea Demokratia fully supports the targets of fiscal adjustment, regarding all issues on eliminating the deficit and reversing the debt dynamics; it also supports “tools” already implemented (albeit poorly); namely, public expenditure cutting, fighting tax evasion, structural reforms, privatization programs and capitalizing on idle real estate public property.
On the evidence of the budget execution so far, we believe that certain policies have to be modified, so as to guarantee the Program’s success. This is more so, since according to the latest European Economic forecasts, Greece in 2012 will be the only European country with 5 consecutive years in recession!
We intend to bring these issues to discussion, along with viable policy alternatives, strictly within the framework outlined by the Program. We give great emphasis to allowing for prompt recovery, so that public revenues generated will help us achieve the targets set.
We also attribute special emphasis to the implementation procedures which have to be streamlined and upgraded.
The commitment of the Greek people and of Nea Demokratia to the European Union and the Euro is strong and irrevocable.
Nea Demokratia believes that Greece can get out of the crisis and safeguard its social cohesion.
We are committed to make that happen.
Antonis C. Samaras
President of Nea Demokratia