Suspecting that the June 17 elections may lead Greece to a political deadlock, PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos and Democratic Left chief Fotis Kouvelis presented on Sunday separate plans that they believe could form the basis for a unity government.
Venizelos held a news conference to announce that he had sent a letter to New Democracy, SYRIZA, Democratic Left and Independent Greeks setting out eight points, which could be used to create what he termed a “government of shared responsibility.”
“It seems that we are heading for a deadlock,” Venizelos told journalists. “None of the scenarios after the elections looks like leading to a solution. What they’re leading to is an absence of government.”
His eight-point plan calls for the creation of a unity government by the parties that favor Greece remaining in the euro. Venizelos suggested that it should remain in place until at least the European Parliament elections of 2014.
He also called for all parties in the government to take part in the attempt to renegotiate the most onerous terms of the EU-IMF bailout, for the extension of the fiscal adjustment period by three years (from 2014 to 2017) and to ensure that Greek public debt remains sustainable.
The PASOK leader also proposed kick-starting the discussion about structural reforms, agreeing on a new, simple and socially just taxation system that would remain unchanged for 10 years. He said that all the parties would have to commit to achieving growth and the creation of jobs through public and private investment. Finally he proposed a “social security safety net” for low-income families that would be managed by municipalities.
The proposals were similar to those put forward by Kouvelis. “The first thing that has to happen is for a government to be formed,” said the Democratic Left leader.
The seven positions presented by Kouvelis are: cleaning up the political system, disengaging from the EU-IMF memorandum by 2017, overhauling Greece’s productive capacity, reorganizing agricultural development, ensuring citizens’ safety, tackling illegal immigration, supporting and broadening social security and certain steps on foreign policy issues.
Among the proposals made by Democratic Left are: scrapping ministerial and parliamentary immunity, halving state funding for parties and freezing wage and pension cuts.