German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives and the ecologist Greens agreed on Thursday to continue talks next week to sound out a potential government coalition, delegates said.
The first exploratory meeting came almost three weeks after Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) and their Bavarian allies the CSU won September 22 elections but fell short of a ruling majority.
The CDU and CSU are already engaged in ongoing talks with the centre-left Social Democrats, who are seen by most political observers and in polls as the more likely ally.
On Thursday all sides agreed that "it makes sense and is necessary" to meet again for more talks next Tuesday, said CDU general secretary Hermann Groehe after the first round of exploratory talks lasted more than three hours.
Merkel's conservatives and the Social Democrats wrapped up initial coalition talks on Friday with an agreement to meet again on October 14.