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Latvia gets green light to join the euro


brussels bureau

Latvia gets green light to join the euro

Latvia has been given the green light by the European Commission to become the 18th member of the eurozone.

The Baltic state should start using the single currency from the start of next year.

Its membership must be backed by EU finance ministers and MEPs, but neither are expected to block the move.

Olli Rehn, the EU economics commissioner, said: “Latvia’s experience shows that a country can successfully overcome macroeconomic imbalances, however sever, and emerge stronger out of the crisis. Latvia is now forecast to be the fastest growing economy in the European Union.”

Lativans backed joining the EU in a 2003 referendum.

But a finance ministry poll commissioned last month found that just 38 percent of the country supported joining the single currency.

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