The need for political change in the country was reiterated by Mr. Kyriakos Mitsotakis during his three-day visit at the Thessaloniki International Fair, where he described the main axis of governance that New Democracy would follow if it won the majority in the next national elections.
Having as his main slogan, “We, Greeks deserve better,” Mr. Kyriakos Mitsotakis made extensive references to the three main priorities of his New Democracy government. His first priority would be the creation of a large number new jobs through a large increase and influx of private investment. The second priority is going to be the reduction of the tax burdens and the rationalization of the operation of the State and government, with the third priority being the provision of additional support to young people and to the weaker social strat.
However, in order to be able to implement his government plan, Mr. Mitsotakis set as a priority and precondition the need to renegotiate elements of the fiscal adjustment program, such as the level of the primary surpluses, while at the same time pointing out that this will only take place when the partners regain confidence in the Greek government.
No mention to Alexis Tsipras
Having as a strategic choice during his speech at the Vellidio Hall in Thessaloniki not to make any specific mention to Alexis Tsipras once, Kyriakos Mitsotakis put forward his own vision for the country’s next day, by presenting the framework of the first three bills to be voted immediately after the elections by his own government. The first bill will be concerned with the New Organizational framework of the Government and the top levels of the government administration, a bill that is already written up. The second one will concern bold – as he called it – tax reforms, so that with the strongest political consensus to establish for at least a period of 10 years a stable tax framework, as so a to create a stable economic and financial framework as well as to be provide the main incentives in order to attract investors.
Kyriakos Mitsotakis pledged and committed to a reduction in the corporate income tax from 29% to 20%, a reduction in ENFIA by 30% in within a two year span, a 5% reduction in dividend tax, an increase in the VAT threshold to 25.000 euros, to setting an introductory tax rate of 9% for up to € 10,000 for individuals, with an additional tax exemption of € 1,000 for each child that will remain stable for at least the next five years, while at the same time, aiming for the abolition of the solidarity levy and by implementing a VAT system that will only use two main rates, at 11% and 22%.
The third bill will tackle the issue and the need of the simplification of the licensing procedures for businesses.
Emphasis on investments
The leader of New Democracy placed great emphasis on attracting new investments that will create new jobs.
“The message is clear. Come and invest in Greece. We can guarantee tax stability, simplification of licensing procedures and a stable legal framework, “he argued during his speech, introducing his plan on the possibility of financing businesses, making better use of European resources and funds, paying off public sector debt quickly to individual suppliers, and in providing incentives for reduced employers’ contributions for those that are up-to-date with the social security contributions.
Particular mention was made by the leader of the center-right faction on issues related to the younger generations and the education system, reiterating his intentions to establish private universities, to abolish the asylum system as it is now operated in higher education institutions, having as his main aim the creation in Greece, within a 10 year span of the best universities in south-eastern Europe.
Regarding what New Democracy will do if it does not achieved a total majority and regarding with which political parties it will cooperate, Mr. Mitsotakis excluded both SYRIZA and ANEL. “We wish and aim for the highest possible percentage”. He even explained that even if he forms a majority government, New Democracy “will seek an extended parliamentary majority”.
To this end, he said he would put forward an elaborate “Mutually agreed and assured political Agenda” and once he puts this one forward, it would depend on the other political parties to agree upon this agenda.