In order to participate in next week’s EPP congress organized by the party of president Sarkozy in France, ND president Antonis Samaras will have his first trip out of the country after his opposition turn.
After passing the budget, Samaras will depart for Marseille on Wednesday , where he will speak at the general meeting of the EPP and the following day he will participate in the summit. ND believes that the turn he made, with his support for Papademos’ government and the acceptance of the memorandum policy, will normalize his relations with ND's sister parties in Europe, which had been strained for the last year and a half.
In shortND expects the EPP to agree on the new opposition tactics and show a change of attitude to Antonis Samaras.
ND has decided to vote for the budget as a whole as it believes that it is transitory, it will be not implemented and will be reviewed after the elections. It will override the thorns included in the budget such as the provision for the privatization of OPAP. Faced with the new situation, ND's position has changed. Now they say that "the objection expressed by the president concerned the proceeds from the privatization of OPAP in that those circumstances were extremely low-level and unattractive. You cannot privatize at the cost of the revenues of two years."
Thus, they are suggesting that they will vote for the article but will reverse it later, arguing for low consideration when the time for privatization comes. They are dealing with the budget forecast for revenue growth in 2012, which is not yet specified, in a similar way. "Generally we have no objection but we argue that improvement should be the turning point for development," says an executive member of the economic team, suggesting that ND will not opt for confrontation at this point. Besides, the adoption of the budget was one of the five points included the famous letter by Samaras to the EPP. ND believes that the budget will be changed in the course of next year anyway. Of course, this does not negate the political cost of Samaras’ agreement with onerous policies for society, a matter of concern to policy makers of the party who live with the anxiety of the next polls.
Distances from the government
To balance impressions, ND has decided to move once again in opposition to individual policy issues such as redundancy or the real estate hike. In the same context, they attacked Pangalos concerning his recent statements. The part believes that he is distancing himself from the government and the policies decided prior to the coalition.
Generally, ND is trying to separate itself from the Papademos government in all matters not related to the reconciliation of political leaders such as the approval of the agreement and the PSI. This was symbolized by the absence of Stavros Dimas and Dimitris Avramopoulos from the first meeting of the PG chaired by Lucas Papademos.
Although they were legitimately absent due to international obligations, they did not show any inclination for the PG to convene at a later date so they could attend. So, the question arises as to whether Papademos was aware of the international obligations of his ministers and why the secretary of the cabinet recorded them as unjustifiably absent.