David Cameron has said he hopes the rejection by Dutch voters of a trade deal between Brussels and Ukraine will not affect the outcome of Britain's referendum on EU membership.

Strong opposition to an agreement has been seen as a reflection of wider anti-EU sentiment in the Netherlands and was seized on by Brexit campaigners as a signal to wavering Britons that it is "moderate and normal" to oppose Brussels.

Far-right anti-Islam Dutch MP Geert Wilders said the result could help secure a vote for Britain to leave the EU in the referendum on June 23, suggesting it could be "the start of the end of the European Union as we know it".

But, talking to students during a visit to Exeter, the Prime Minister insisted the Dutch poll was on a "very different" issue.

Mr Cameron said: "I hope it won't affect our results of our referendum because it is a very different issue."

Turnout was just 32% in the referendum but 61% of Dutch voters rejected the deal removing trade barriers with Ukraine.

European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker previously warned that a "No" vote "would open the door to a great continental crisis".

Mr Cameron spoke to close ally Mark Rutte, the Dutch prime minister, in a phone call last night.

He told students: "I think it's very important the Dutch government stops and thinks and looks at that referendum and doesn't try to dismiss it and I know they won't do that."

The Prime Minister said Ukraine wants to look towards Europe and we "shouldn't be pushing them away" but he urged the EU to "listen carefully" to what the Dutch people had said.

He added: "I personally think it's a good idea for Europe and Ukraine to have a relationship. I don't think that means Ukraine is going to join the European Union, I don't think it means we are going to have free movement of people between Ukraine and the United Kingdom."

Nigel Farage claimed the referendum result revealed Dutch voters' discontent with the EU.

During a visit to Edinburgh to launch Ukip's Holyrood election manifesto, the party leader said: "In reality the voters who turned out yesterday were effectively delivering a litmus test on how the Dutch feel about their current relationship with the European Union.

"I am pleased to say the Dutch once again have quite overwhelmingly voted No in a European referendum, they did the very same back in 2005 and were completely ignored, it will be interesting to see what happens this time round."

He added: "I'm pleased to say there's going to be quite a large delegation of Dutch organisers and No campaigners coming to the United Kingdom in the month of June to help us with our referendum."

Leave.EU spokesman Brian Monteith said: "This humiliating rejection of the Ukraine agreement demonstrates that people don't have to support the EU and its expansionist agenda to feel European.

"Nobody could accuse the Dutch of not being good Europeans but they have no willingness to open their borders to more migrants and pick up the tab for Ukraine's problems, just like most UK voters.

"This result gives the British people the signal that it is moderate and normal to reject the EU and stand up for what's in our country's best interests. The sun is now setting on the European Union."