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Ontario sees budget deficit widening after providing C$17 bln coronavirus aid

TORONTO, March 25 (Reuters) - The Canadian province of Ontario, the world’s biggest sub-sovereign debtor, forecast on Wednesday a jump in its budget deficit for 2020-21 as it provided a C$17 billion ($12 billion) financial package to support the economy in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Canada’s most populous province and economic engine forecast a deficit of C$20.5 billion in the fiscal year beginning on April 1, an economic update from the Progressive Conservative government showed. That compares with an estimated deficit of C$9.2 billion for 2019-20.

Ontario scrapped its initial plans to release its budget on Wednesday because of the virus outbreak and instead provided an economic update.

$1 = 1.4199 Canadian dollars Reporting by Fergal Smith Editing by Denny Thomas and Grant McCool