AGREEMENT on a single all-Wales constabulary will be reached by Friday, Welsh Secre-tary Peter Hain predicted yesterday.
Police authorities have until the end of the week to merge voluntarily. Home Secretary Charles Clarke will press ahead with the merger if the deadline is missed.
The South Wales, Gwent, North Wales and Dyfed-Powys authorities have said they are unlikely to agree to the merger.
But Mr Hain said, "I hope they will voluntarily merge and I think they will, because that's the way to get the best possible deal and the best possible financial deal."
The Government is offering £120m to reorganise forces in England and Wales. Bigger forces are needed to tackle serious organised crime and terrorism, it says.
There are fears council tax payers will pay heavily for the changes.