Germany’s SPD, Greens, liberals reach initial deal

Olaf Scholz  

German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz took a step closer to succeeding Angela Merkel as Chancellor, as his Social Democrats, the ecologist Greens and liberal FDP on Friday announced a preliminary deal to form a new government.

The three parties have been holding talks since Mr. Scholz’s centre-left Social Democratic Party (SPD) won the general elections on September 26 with Ms. Merkel's conservatives in second place as she prepares to leave politics.

“Overall, we can sense here that a new beginning is possible, brought about by the three parties that have come together here," Mr. Scholz told reporters. “We have agreed on a text from the exploratory talks,” he said, adding that this “is a very good result that clearly shows that a government that aims to ensure we achieve progress can be formed in Germany.”

Greens co-leader Annalena Baerbock said the initial agreement heralds a “coalition of progress” to "really use the next decade as a decade of renewal".

The agreement that will form the basis of formal coalition talks all but means that Merkel’s CDU-CSU alliance is headed for the opposition benches after scoring their worst post-war election result.

CDU leader and chancellor hopeful Armin Laschet had recently said his party remains open to forming a governing coalition, but even his own job is hanging on a thread.

Facing their worst crisis in decades, the conservatives are planning a clean sweep of their leadership, with a congress by December to elect their new bosses.

Mr. Scholz, who is also Ms. Merkel's Vice-Chancellor, this week voiced confidence that the three-way talks involving his party will produce Germany's next government before Christmas.

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Printable version | Dec 5, 2021 8:58:12 AM |

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