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Following Germany’s September 2013 elections, Chancellor Merkel returns for a third term in office, personally hugely popular and with her centre-right CDU/CSU's best result for years. But because her favoured coalition partners, the FDP, were ousted from the Bundestag for the first time, she has had to negotiate a grand coalition with the centre-left SPD. The coalition agreement includes SPD polices on some social issues such as a national minimum wage, but the CDU/CSU has kept its tax and eurozone policies. There is a high level of consensus between the coalition partners over foreign and defence policy.

What will the effect of the minimum wage be? What will Germany do if the eurozone crisis flares up again? Will Germany take a stronger lead in Europe or internationally? Will the grand coalition and/or Merkel see out their term of office, and how might the parties fare in the next elections in 2017?


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