Our web interview with Dimitris Tzanakopoulos, Secretary of the Central Committee of SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance and MP of the Hellenic Parliament.
The Corona-virus has hit the EU unprepared, but in different ways and with different effects depending on the countries. Most severe were the effects on those countries whose healthcare and social systems have been emaciated by decades of austerity policies. Thus, the pandemic has increased inequalities not only inside the states but also between the Member States of the EU. This presents the parties of the radical left with a challenge and calls for a re-examination of their strategies.
The main focus of the discussions will be the impact of the pandemic on the economic, social, political, and cultural life of particular countries. We have observed that the EU’s failure to address the health crisis and provide support to the most affected states has changed the way the Union is perceived in parts of Europe. To what extent and with what consequences does this apply to the countries whose parties our interviewees represent? How can the left cope with the economic and social crisis and the recession that is very likely to come in its wake? How do the left parties connect their national strategies to global problems, in particular the influx of refugees and the answers urgently required by the global environmental crisis.
Walter Baier, economist in Vienna, was National Chairman of the Communist Party of Austria (KPÖ) from 1994 to 2006. He was an editor of the Austrian weekly Volksstimme and from 2007 until 2020 he has been the coordinator of the network transform! europe.
Danai Koltsida, Greek lawyer and political scientist and currently the director of Nicos Poulantzas Institute and Vice President of transform! europe. Her scientific interests include electoral behaviour, political representation and political personnel, electoral systems, local and regional government and constitutional and political history. She is member of SYRIZA.