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German Social Democrats, Greens and FDP back formal coalition talks

Germany's Social Democrats and two smaller parties - the Greens and the business-friendly Free Democrats (FDP) - came out in favour of formal talks to forge a coalition after last month's election led to a reordering of the country's political landscape.

Berlin, 15 October 2021 (dpa/MIA) – Germany’s Social Democrats and two smaller parties – the Greens and the business-friendly Free Democrats (FDP) – came out in favour of formal talks to forge a coalition after last month’s election led to a reordering of the country’s political landscape.

“We are convinced that we can conclude an ambitious and viable coalition agreement,” a joint paper issued after a final exploratory round on Friday said.

It came almost three weeks after the September 26 elections saw a sharp fall in support for outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative alliance.

The Social Democrats, with Finance Minister Olaf Scholz as their candidate for chancellor, came out on top.

“The exploratory talks were characterized by trust, respect and mutual consideration. We aim to continue with this,” the paper said.

The Greens are to hold a party conference that could meet this weekend. The FDP negotiators will go back to the party executives before proceeding.

Whereas the exploratory talks are about sounding out common ground and differences without any commitment, substantive talks will signal the start of a process with a clear intention of forming a viable coalition.

If it succeeds, it will result in the first three-way coalition at federal level since the 1950s.

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