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Pressure Mounts On Government Formation Talks To Conclude

The leaders want to get the text of a programme for government signed off, but a number of key sticking points remain.

There's still the meat of the issue on agriculture to be dealt with the two larger parties trying to ensure any significant cuts to the country's carbon emissions are felt elsewhere.

There's still no agreement on building houses through the Land Development Agency while the pension age is also proving a sticking point.

The tougher issues were meant to be kicked upstairs to the three party leaders this week, but that raises questions over Eamon Ryan's authority to rule on them.

If the Greens Catherine Martin hasn't agreed to it at negotiating team level, can Ryan overrule her given they may soon be competing for the party leadership.

Nominations for that contest close on Sunday, providing another hard deadline for these talks given Catherine Martin says the Greens shouldn't have a contest until the issue of government has been settled.

The Taoiseach has conceded its likely to be next week before programme for government negotiations conclude.

A deadline had been set for the end of the week but that will now be missed.

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