A conservative-Green coalition for Austria?
More than 40 days after its snap election Austria still has no government. Now election winner Sebastian Kurz, leader of the conservative ÖVP, has launched coalition talks with the Greens. Commentators expect the negotiations to be tough but say they could lead to an interesting experiment.
Saving the world to polish their image
Sebastian Kurz will meet the Greens halfway on climate protection, Der Standard predicts:
“Kurz sees this as sensible, not just to save the world or at least to do something better. There is also the enhancement of his image. The head of the ÖVP is not averse to this approach. At least in Europe, Austria could become a trailblazer in environmental protection. Kurz likes the idea of it being a model country. So he will probably accommodate the Greens. On other issues, however, the ÖVP is less willing to compromise. When it comes to immigration, location policy and tax reforms, Kurz clearly doesn't want to be pushed around much, if at all.”
This experiment is being followed closely in Berlin
If the conservatives and the Greens manage to reach an agreement despite all their differences, it will be eyed with suspicion, Hospodářské noviny believes:
“The experiment is not just an Austrian affair. It will be followed with interest, particularly in Germany. Similar poll results are being posted in Berlin, with the difference that the Greens are considerably stronger there. In the upcoming German elections which may take place before the end of the legislative period in two years' time the Christian Democrats may face the same choices as the conservatives in Austria are now.”