Mines, pitfalls and opportunities

Sunday, November 27, 2016

The domestic and foreign circumstances are constantly getting worse, which in turn creates a climate of generalized complication. Greek society is being pressured on many levels, from the tax burden, the slew of obligations and the agony for work.

However much this peculiar state of waiting and tolerance is maintained, the nerves are shot and the pot is boiling, so it is not unlikely for an unexpected event to cause a social explosion.

And all of this is going on concurrently with the critical negotiations with the creditors for the second bailout review and the relief measures for the excessive and oppressive public debt.

Creditors and partners want guarantees over any settlement on the Greek debt and demand additional measures to ensure proper implementation. This will likely intensify social engineering. Moreover, the bolstering of anti-union forces in Europe and our country, following Trump's electoral win in the USA, is affecting our country.

More and more are investing in similar anti-systemic platforms, as they count on finding unclaimed living space for political action.

Therefore lately there is an escalation of movements, groups and unions that are resisting the almost one-way politics, by investing in the next day of the collision, which some consider possible and others are preparing for. Irrespective of capabilities, their corrosive actions against the existing and in many ways worn out political system, must be taken for granted.

But it is not just the domestic front that is causing concern, as everything else is equally problematic.

The refugee crisis is mostly pressuring the islands in the northeast Aegean, the residents are worried and Turkey is threatening to flood Europe with refugees and is making clams as a counterbalance to the potential loss of territory to the east of its border, from a potential settlement of the Syrian crisis.

At the same time talks on the Cypriot dispute are adding further tension and doubts and as if that wasn't enough, last week the Albanian leadership came up with a “package solution” for the differences it assumes it has with our country.

Without a doubt there is no shortage of pitfalls and mines. The government has an obligation  to prioritize and closed these open fronts. The first that needs to be addressed in the economy. At present Greece cannot endure any further extension of the financial crisis.

The Prime Minister's first obligation is to assume the political cost and close the second review in time, in order to help support the Greek economy.

At the same time he must cut through the red tape hindering major private investments in Greece, such as the Elliniko project, the reconstruction of the 14 regional airports, as well as  resuming privatizations. This will help kick start the economy and allow enough time and space for initiatives in our neighborhood, in order to safeguard the country against external dangers and threats.

Everything else will come in due time...

 

Antonis Karakousis
Originally published in the Sunday print edition