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Germany Votes: Merkel wins third term as Liberals exit Parliament

Angela Merkel has won a larger-than-expected victory in Germany’s federal parliamentary elections, held on Sunday 22 September.

Her party, the Christian Democrats (CDU) and its Bavarian partners, the Christian Social Union (CSU) fell just short of an overall majority.

Mrs Merkel will therefore need a new coalition partner for her third term as Chancellor, as the share of the vote for Liberal Free Democratic Party (FDP), with whom the CDU/CSU has governed for the past four years, fell below the five per cent threshold for entry into the Bundestag.

Despite the clear win for the centre-right CDU/CSU, the elections saw a slight shift towards the left, with the collapse of the FDP vote and the Social Democrats (SPD) gaining support.

The next few weeks will see a prolonged period of coalition negotiations, with a ‘grand coalition’ between the CDU/CSU and the SPD, under the leadership of Mrs Merkel, the most likely outcome.

Under the new government, continuity is likely but with slightly more socially-oriented policies on the economy, finance and taxation, the European Union, social security and healthcare.

Read our full election Insight