Schinas: There is a window of opportunity to begin dialogue with Turkey

The period until the September 25 summit is a “window of opportunity” to start a process of dialogue with Turkey, which must be taken advantage of, said the vice-president of the European Commission, Margaritis Schinas, on Thursday in an interview with public broadcaster ERT.

In the economic field, he stressed that there is a possibility for Greece to receive 10 pct of the funds allocated to it from the Recovery Fund immediately after the approval of Greece’s national plan by the Commission and before it is approved by the Council of Ministers. That said, along with the 2.7 billion SURE program for employment, it will be a “significant cushion” before substantial resources are handed over next year.

Regarding the prospect of a coronavirus vaccine, he said that there is central coordination for its purchase and distribution so that all Europeans will have equal and affordable access.

On Greek-Turkish developments, he said: “By the EU summit on September 25, there is hope that the dialogue process with Turkey will move forward, once the aggressive tactics and statements from the Turkish side stop.”

He stressed that “there is a structured process at a European level with the whole European family on the side of Greece,” and reiterated the expectation that “through this process a way out, of de-escalation by returning to normalcy in the Eastern Mediterranean, will be found.”

“We have a window of opportunity that we must take advantage of,” he said.