Merkel’s victory brightens Germany's nuclear future

28 September 2009

Germany's nuclear phase-out policy looks set for revision after Angela Merkel’s party, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), won the German federal elections by a comfortable majority. It is now likely that Germany's 17 nuclear power plants - all due to be shut down by 2022 - will have their lives extended for ten to fifteen years.

The results of the federal elections, which took place on 27 September gave a majority to the CDU, 33.5%, while the socialist party (SPD) suffered a defeat with its worst result since the war, around 23%. The Free Democrats (FDP), ranked third with 14.5% of the vote. The left-wing, Die Linke, collected 13% of the vote and the Greens, Die Grüne, received 10%.

Merkel has outlined plans to form a swift coalition with the FDP. Before the election both parties said that they will introduce a new nuclear law and allow the nuclear power plants to operate longer than the 32 years fixed by the former red-green government.

Shares in German utilities E.ON and RWE rose by more than 4%, amid hopes that the new administration would decide to extend the life of the reactor fleet.

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