The SPD leader Olaf Scholz had come one step closer to Germany’s new chancellorship on Friday when his party opened formal coalition talks with the Greens and the Free Democrats.
Scholz announced that the three parties, which have enough seats in the Bundestag to form a government, agree that they have enough in common to start negotiations.
The coalition still needs the approval of the leadership of the Greens and the Free Democrats.
The Social Democrats won the elections in Germany on September 26th by a narrow margin, Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union came in second, their worst election result of all time.
Should the coalition talks stall, the CDU could theoretically form a minority government with the support of the Greens and Liberals, although this is unlikely. Another alternative would be a “grand coalition” made up of the CDU and SPD, as was the case under Merkel.
Merkel, who has led Germany since 2005, announced in 2018 that she would not seek a fifth term in office.