The Netherlands should move away from the politics of fear, declares Bernard Wientjes, chair of the VNO-NCW employers' association. 'We have to throw our doors open for foreign students.'
The recruitment of foreign students should be done in a more focused way, but the government is standing in the way. The debate on the relatively large numbers of Germans studying in the Netherlands is 'absurd', says Wientjes; state secretary Zijlstra's concern with the costs and benefits of foreign students is 'a useless defensive exercise'.
The benefits cannot be quantified, he says. 'Take the Russians who have studied in the Netherlands. All of them are our country's ambassadors. That yield is beyond measuring.'