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Canada’s Harper Stressing Need to Be Ready for Greek Vote

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper has been stressing with his counterparts from the Group of 20 nations the need to be ready for all possible outcomes following the June 17 Greek elections, a spokesman said.

Asked about reports that the G-20 is ready to take steps to stabilize financial markets if needed in the immediate aftermath of the election, Andrew MacDougall said “it’s incumbent for any government in this environment to be ready to deal with all eventualities.”

“The G-20 showed it was able to act quite nimbly in the original downturn,” MacDougall said at a briefing for reporters in Ottawa ahead of the June 18-19 summit in Mexico. “If there’s one thing experience has taught us, it’s you have to be ready for these eventualities as they come up.”

G-20 leaders start arriving in the resort of Los Cabos on June 17, the same day as parliamentary elections in Greece, with the threat of Greece exiting the euro currency union hanging over the summit. MacDougall said the debt crisis in Europe will be the main focus of discussions.

Harper will urge his colleagues to follow through on earlier policy pledges, according to a statement issued by his office. “Canada’s message at the G-20 will be that economic growth and fiscal discipline are not mutually exclusive, they go hand in hand,” Harper said in the statement.

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