The leader of the opposition in Greece, and President of New Democracy (ND), Kyriakos Mitsotakis, spoke at the Fletcher School, Tufts University in Boston on March 7, 2019. He gave the annual Behrakis Family Lecture.

The Behrakis Family Endowed Lecture Series, within the Constantine G. Karamanlis Chair in Hellenic and European Studies, is presented annually to promote the understanding of Greece’s domestic and international affairs.

He was introduced by Professor Ian Johnstone, Dean ad interim of The Fletcher School, while  Professor George Alogoskoufis, the Constantine G. Karamanlis Chair in Hellenic and European Studies, moderated the Q&A session with the audience that followed his address.

Athens News Agency

March 7, 2019

Describing the economy as the issue that will determine the outcome of the forthcoming elections, main opposition New Democracy (ND) leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Thursday estimated that 2019 will be a decisive year for the country’s path to recovery.

During his speech at Tufts University, the leader of the main opposition party argued that the country needs a “political change” to achieve stronger growth that would be sufficient to actually improve the daily lives of Greek citizens.

Mitsotakis said that he hopes that 2019 will be a year of significant and substantial political change. “I am not saying this because it is my obligation to do so as opposition leader but because I fundamentally believe that political change is now a prerequisite for Greece to face the future with sustainable optimism,” he added.

Mitsotakis estimated that for the first time markets view the possibility of elections as a positive development that will help consolidate stability.

Moreover, he analysed the main pillars of his economic programme, which, he said, focuses on investment and aims at growth.

“I am very worried about inequality,” he said and added: When I proposed the development plan for the next day, I was always talking about growth without exclusions. Therefore, growth in Greece today must be driven by investment. It can no longer be driven by consumption, as was the case in the past. And in order to promote growth through investment, some basic conditions must be created.

Regarding how Greece will become an attractive investment destination, Mitsotakis noted that he will “aggressively” move to improve the business environment through the methodical implementation of targeted reforms that will correct the systemic causes of corruption and bureaucracy.

Link to the Fletcher Invitation to the Lecture

Link to Athens News Agency Report