The rise of the anti-immigration PVV in the opinion polls could damage the Netherlands’ reputation abroad, employers’ chief Hans de Boer told a television current affairs show on Sunday.
‘If the Netherlands develops a reputation of wanting little to do with the rest of the world and is afraid of the influence of other cultures, it will be a concern,’ De Boer told WNL op Zondag.
De Boer chairs the VNO-NCW, which is the Netherlands’ biggest employer federation. His predecessor, Bernard Wientjes, also warned about the impact of the PVV and its leader Geert Wilders on Dutch trade interests.
Support for the PVV has risen to a record level in the latest weekly poll by Maurice de Hond. The poll says Wilders’ party would win 37 seats in parliament if there was a general election tomorrow, giving them around 25% support.
The party has 15 of the current 150 seats in parliament. The De Hond poll shows Wilders is also winning support outside his traditional working class base. Some 14% of people with a college or university degree say they would vote for the PVV, compared with just 5% in July.
The poll shows support for the other big parties (VVD, D66, SP and CDA) at between 11% and 13%.
The results of De Hond’s poll are based on an online survey of some 3,000 people who chose to register with his polling organisation.
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