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Last Updated: Monday, 5 May, 2003, 12:10 GMT 13:10 UK
Brazil and Argentina eye currency

The Deputy Foreign Minister of Argentina, Martin Redrado, has said his country and neighbouring Brazil are discussing the possibilities of introducing a common currency.

In a newspaper interview, Mr Redrado said the two currencies - the Argentinian peso and the Brazilian real - were worth almost the same.

Mr Redrado is in talks with the Brazilian Government in the country's capital, Brasilia, on Monday.

Correspondents say Argentina and Brazil are the economic powerhouses behind a trading bloc for Latin American countries known as Mercosur which includes Paraguay and Uruguay, and also Bolivia and Chile as associate members.

The Brazilian Government has also welcomed the steps to improve the common market.

Argentinian Government officials say the plans - which aim to reduce currency fluctuations in the region - would be on hold until the next president takes office.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service


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