ÖVP fraction wins WKO election

The People’s Party’s (ÖVP) VP-Business Association has won this year’s Federal Economic Chamber (WKO) election for members’ representatives in specialised sectors.It was announced on Tuesday this week that the ÖVP organisation had won 70.9 per cent of the vote or 0.8 of a percentage point more than five years ago and had again won a majority of the vote in Vienna.Christoph Leitl, who is WKO president and the leader of the ÖVP’s organisation, said it was “sensational” that his fraction had won the vote in all nine Austrian provinces.He offered cooperation with the other fractions after the results were announced. He added that his fraction was not to blame for low turnout of only 41 per cent of the 418,000 eligible to vote, compared to 48 per cent in 2005.The Social Democratic (SPÖ) Business Association (SMV) led by Christoph Matznetter got 11.8 per cent, 1.2 percentage points lower than five years ago. He said he was pleased that the result was close to the SP֒s all-time best showing in 2005.The Ring of the Freedom Party (FPÖ) Business Operatives (RFW) got 8.4 per cent, 1.5 percentage points lower than five years ago. RFW’ Fritz Amann said everyone needed to ask how WKO could better represent business’ interests, given the relatively low turnout.The Greens had an increase of 30 per cent to 5.7 per cent of the vote compared to five years ago. Greens’ fraction chief Volker Plass said his fraction was not responsible if WKO had a legitimacy problem with its members.WKO’s executive committee will be elected on 24 June.