The former Greek Prime Minister and PASOK leader Giorgos Papandreou was invited in by the Hertie School of Governance to participate in a conference on administrative management in Europe and gave an interview to Deutsche Welle.
In his interview the former PM stressed that the electoral rise of far-right parties in Europe is a “especially worrying” phenomenon and argued that the dropping quality of life was, in part, to blame. Mr. Papandreou referred to a “democratic deficit” in the European Union which fuels the sense of marginalization shared by Euro-skeptics.
Mr. Papandreou also expressed his belief that the European Commission is “too weak”, despite taking important initiatives to convince the people that it achieves its goals. The former PM also hinted that the European Council took the major decisions and argued that Germany’s opinions prevailed in the council decisions.
When questioned about the recent elections in Greece and the chances of early general elections, the former PASOK leader expressed his reservation about the possibility of an early vote, but estimated that the government parties must take the outcome of the recent elections seriously and consider changes in the management of natural resources and the workforce.
The former Prime Minister then explained that he is willing to contribute towards the recovery of center left, after it suffered significant loses in recent times. Mr. Papandreou explained that since many former PASOK officers have joined SYRIZA, the possibility of a left and center left coalition is not unlikely.
As for revelations regarding the possibility and talks of a “Grexit” in 2011, Mr. Papandreou denied being presented with a similar plan and claimed that should he had gone through with his referendum, he is certain that the vast majority of people would support the bailout program. Mr. Papandreou added that should Greece’s European partners been as determined in 2010 as they are in contemporary times, the bailout may not have been needed.