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Lithuania 'poised to join euro'

The European Union official that oversees the euro says Lithuania is ready to join the common currency as of next year and expects a full decision next month.

If it joins, the Baltic nation would become the 19th country to use the currency that was launched in 1999.

Lithuania's move to join is another vote of confidence in the euro, which has suffered a half-decade of financial stress following debt problems in a number of countries, such as Greece and Spain.

EU Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn said that "thanks to the efforts of the past five years, this ship is far better placed to navigate rough seas than it was at the outbreak of the crisis".

The current euro members are not expected to object to the addition.

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