The State pension age remains one of the key stumbling blocks in the government formation talks.
The three party leaders involved in negotiations met yesterday to try to resolve differences on plans to increase the age to 67 next year.
However, after a four-hour meeting between Micheál Martin, Leo Varadkar and Eamon Ryan, agreement had not been reached and their negotiating teams will have to find a resolution in the coming days.
A Fianna Fáil source suggested increasing the age to 67 could be delayed for a number of years in line with some other EU countries where it is not due to go up until 2028.
However, a Fine Gael source said this would be "too much of a fudge".
The leaders have agreed to set up a commission on pensions which will examine a new auto-enrolment system and the contributions people will be expected to make to receive a State pension.
Mr Martin wants the age to remain at 66, while Mr Varadkar is insisting on it being increased in line with a long-running government strategy aimed at reducing State pension costs.
The Green Party campaigned in the General Election to stop the age increasing but it is not a red-line issue for it in the talks.
Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Green Party are understood to be close to reaching agreement on the national deficit.
The Green Party has insisted a programme for government should not commit to immediate annual decreases in the national debt because it believes it will lead to the introduction of welfare cuts and tax increases.
"It creates a programme for government that is built around language which says you need to balance the budget and reduce the deficit. That is the language of austerity and they know it is," a Green source said.
However, a Fianna Fáil source said they were confident wording could be found to address the Green Party's concerns.
They said they could see a "landing zone" on almost every issue after the talks between the leaders.
The parties have also agreed to review the Project Ireland 2040 National Development Plan as soon as they can form a government.
Mr Martin and Mr Varadkar insisted there are projects that must go ahead and said the new plan should focus on job creation as the country faces into an unprecedented economic slow down after the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Green Party has insisted on more investment in cycling and walking.
The three leaders also discussed how to address a commitment to reduce carbon emissions by 7pc per year.
Last night, Fine Gael was insisting there must be a guarantee in the programme for government that income tax and the USC are not increased in the coming years.
It was also pushing for a new jobs initiative to set out how employment can be restored in tourism and retail in the first 100 days of office.
The party also wants some of the revenue generated from carbon taxes to be ring-fenced for a grant scheme for farmers who invest in biodiversity.
The parties are aiming to have a programme for government completed before the end of the week.