Brussels, Belgium, 1 March 2012
Statement by George Α. Papandreou President of PASOK before attending the PES leaders Meeting In Brussels
"Finally, conservative Europe is realising that we cannot get out of this crisis only through austerity measures.
I would like to use a word which is not fiscal austerity, but fiscal responsibility. And fiscal responsibility means that we certainly have to put our house in order, as we are doing in Greece.
But it also means a comprehensive and European-wide strategy for growth, growth which will give jobs, jobs to our youth, but growth which is also based on quality, and not inequality.
We cannot compete on the basis of wages with emerging markets. We can compete on the basis of the quality of our products.
And that means investing in people, it means investing in education, investing in innovation, investing in major infrastructure projects which will unite Europe, the single market, in transportation, in broadband, in green energy grids, in a green economy. This will make Europe competitive.
And now, as Greece has made major structural reforms and has this very important package, of change but also of support, I believe that we will be in a much more stable situation.
And this is in fact what Greece will also be investing in.
In its comparative advantages, in a competitive economy which will be based on quality, quality of its agricultural products, its green energy, its high-quality tourism, its shipping industry, its fisheries industry, its services.
And that is, I believe, the type of strategy we need not only for Greece but for all of Europe. Thank you very much."