1. ITV Report

German elections: Angela Merkel expected to win fourth term as chancellor

Angela Merkel is expected to win a fourth terms as chancellor. Credit: AP

Angela Merkel is shaping up to win a fourth term as German chancellor - extending her 12-year stay at the top of the Bundestag.

Federal election polls opened across Germany on Sunday, with the issue of migration likely to feature prominently as ballots are cast.

Mrs Merkel's Christian Democrat (CDU) party is widely expected to win, however, with pollsters predicting it could take up to 37% of the vote.

Polls opened across Germany on Sunday. Credit: AP

Sixty-three-year-old Mrs Merkel has campaigned on her performance to date as chancellor, a post she has held since 2005, as well as the country's record-low unemployment.

Her party's prospects will also likely be boosted by Germany's strong economic growth, a balanced budget and growing international importance.

This weekend's vote could also see the farthest right-wing party for 60 years, the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany, win seats in parliament.

Latest polls have Merkel's bloc at 34 to 37 percent support, the Social Democrats with 21 to 22 percent and the Alternative for Germany, or AfD, with 10 to 13 percent support.