March 17, 2011 / 5:48 PM / 6 years ago

Canada deficit to shrink by 25 percent next year: PM

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<p>Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa March 8, 2011.Chris Wattie</p>

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada's budget deficit will shrink by a quarter in the next year, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Thursday, without giving precise figures.

"The deficit over the past year has already shrunk by a quarter -- by over 25 percent. And it will shrink by the same amount once again in the year to come," he said in remarks to a lunch in Brampton, Ontario.

Harper's office provided reporters with a copy of his speech.

Reporting by David Ljunggren; editing by Janet Guttsman

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