27th September 2015

Tsipras wins Greek elections, his cabinet can continue

Alexis Tsipras, who resigned on 20 August after concluding a harsh third bailout deal for Greece, secured a new 4-year government mandate. His SYRIZA country won the 20 September elections, well ahead of the conservative opposition of New Democracy. The victory gave Tsipras 145 seats in the 300-strong chamber. His coalition partner in the previous government, the right-populist Independent Greeks, also cleared the 3-percent threshold and will continue alongside SYRIZA. The President already appointed Tsipras and his ministers as new government. Third in the vote came the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn, led closely by the socialists (PASOK). The communists, centrists and liberals also succeeded in entering the parliament. On the other hand, ex-SYRIZA rebels failed to win 3 percent and are sidelined. This election was a big win for Tsipras, who secured a fresh mandate. In a smart move, he resigned shortly after passing the bailout deal in parliament, together with first reforms. Painful reforms will only begin to bite in Autumn, and thus September elections were the only way for Tsipras to win another prime ministerial term. Political stability in Greece, now more likely at least in the medium term, is good news also for the EU, which faces big challenges – not least the refugee crisis, where Greece plays a crucial role as a favorite place of entry to the EU by asylum-seekers.

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Members of the American Chamber of Commerce in the Czech Republic