The first projected results are in for Germany's 2021 federal election, with the the center-left Social Democrats (SPD) on 25.5%, narrowly ahead of the center-right Christian Democrats and their Bavarian sister party (CDU/CSU) on 24.5%. Both parties have said they want to form the next government. The environmentalist Greens are on course to record their best ever result, headed for around 14% of the vote. The far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) and the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP) were hovering around the 11% mark. The socialist Left party is on 5%.
In such a tight race, coalition possibilities remain unclear. According to these projections, one option is a continuation of the "grand coalition" of the conservative CDU/CSU bloc and the SPD that has governed Germany since 2013. However, with the two biggest parties both vowing to build the next government, Germany could be headed for a three-way coalition for the first time at federal level. Options include a coalition between the CDU/CSU, the Greens and the FDP. Alternatively, the SPD could also seek to partner up with the Greens and the FDP. The election of Germany's new chancellor by the Bundestag won't take place until a governing coalition has been formed. This could take months. In the meantime, Angela Merkel will remain in office in a caretaker role.
00:00 Armin Laschet speech
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