ANGELA Merkel last night swept to a second term as German chancellor, as her CDU/CSU party triumphed at the polls, bringing the curtain down on one of the strangest coalitions in European politics.<br /><br />The victory brings to an end the CDU&rsquo;s &ldquo;grand coalition&rdquo; with the centre-left Social Democratic Party (SPD) and Merkel will now forge a more comfortable centre-right alliance with the Free Democrats (FDP). <br /><br />SPD leader Frank-Walter Steinmeier conceded what he called a &ldquo;bitter defeat&rdquo; last night as exit polls showed Merkel comfortably ahead.<br /><br />Merkel said her party had &ldquo;achieved something great&rdquo; and pledged to form a coalition with the FDP, whose leader Guido Westerwelle has been tipped as foreign minister.<br /><br />The new &ldquo;black-yellow&rdquo; partnership, named after the parties&rsquo; colours, is expected to implement business friendly economic reforms rendered impossible during the four-year coalition with the SPD.