German business group warns against extremism, rise of far-right AfD
According to Kempf, looking ahead to two elections in Eastern states on Sept. 1, where the AFD could make major inroads, Germany’s attractiveness to business is suffering due to extremist parties.
“Decline and structural weakness loom. Xenophobia and nationalism do not fit with an internationally successful economy,“ he said.
Tino Chrupalla, a senior member of the AFD, said the party derived much of its strength from Eastern states.
He said that Germany was rather threatened by climate nonsense, over-regulation and harm done to the automotive sector by the policies of the established parties.
Chrupalla, however, noted that in Saxony, where the AFD was polling at around 25 per cent ahead of the election, the economy and tourism were booming.
Kempf accused the anti-immigrant party of exploiting negative sentiment in Eastern Germany, where the living standards continue to fall in the West almost 30 years after reunification.
He also accused the AFD of playing on the feelings of dissatisfied citizens.
“I find this behaviour extremely dubious, as it does not solve any problems,“ Kempf said.
In Saxony, the AFD is polling in second place, closely behind Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU).
In Brandenburg, the state that surrounds Berlin which also voted on Sept. 1, it is running neck-to-neck with the CDU and the Social Democrats (SPD), with all three polling around 20 per cent. (dpa/NAN)