Irish May Not Get New Government for Two Months, Fine Gael Says

Ireland may not get a new government for two months, the nation’s ruling party said, after last week’s election produced no clear winner.

With the last of 158 seats filled on Thursday, no grouping won a majority. The nation’s two biggest parties, Fine Gael and Fianna Fail, took 94 seats between them, opening the way for a historic grand coalition.

“We’ll talk to anyone, even Fianna Fail,” Fine Gael lawmaker Damien English said in an interview with broadcaster RTE on Friday in Dublin. He said any new administration must be “long-lasting” and his party is “fully united” behind Prime Minister Enda Kenny.

Fianna Fail said no talks on a coalition have begun yet, and it’s focused on the vote for prime minister when parliament meets again on March 10. While no leader is likely to get a majority, the winner will have a stronger hand going into negotiations to form a government.

So far, investors have remained relaxed about the looming political deadlock. The spread between benchmark bonds and German securities of a similar maturity narrowed to 72 basis points on Friday from 83 basis points just before the election.

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