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CHISINAU -- An EU envoy says the European Commission could give Moldova at least 100 million euros ($147 million) to help it cover its growing budget deficit, RFE/RL's Moldovan Service reports.

The announcement was made on October 7 in Chisinau by Wolfgang Behrendt, a member of the EU delegation in Moldova.

Behrendt said the EU will discuss Moldova's needs with an International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission that is expected to start negotiations for a loan agreement in Chisinau next week.

Moldovan officials have said the country's budget deficit could hit 12 percent of GDP this year, mainly because of the economic downturn in Moldova's main export markets and a fall in remittances sent home by Moldovans working abroad.

Aside from the EU and IMF, the World Bank, and Russia have offered to help Moldova overcome its financial crisis.
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