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UK election may end with no majority winner: survey

[LONDON] Britain's general election is set to end in near deadlock between the ruling Conservatives and the opposition Labour Party, with the latter set to gain a handful of seats, a survey by the Political Studies Association showed.

The survey of 537 pollsters, academics and political journalists showed Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives are likely to win the biggest share of the vote, with 32.6 per cent, compared with 32.3 per cent for Labour. Still, Ed Miliband's party is predicted to win the most seats, taking 282, compared with 278 for the Tories.

With just two months to go before the May 7 vote, the report underlines the uncertainty surrounding the outcome. Opnion polls have consistently shown Labour and the Conservatives neck and neck, with neither party likely to win the 326 seats needed for a majority.

The Scottish National Party may win as many as 29 seats, the survey shows. By contrast, the UK Independence Party may not do as well as some predict - leader Nigel Farage told his party conference on Friday they would win "lots of seats" - with the survey showing it gaining six seats, and the Green Party two.

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The Tories' current coalition partners, the Liberal Democrats, are predicted to win 25 seats.

The survey, which was commissioned by the Political Studies Association, was carried out between Feb 4-21 by Chris Hanretty of the University of East Anglia and Professor Will Jennings of the University of Southampton.