August 4, 2015 / 3:14 AM / in 2 years

China's foreign minister to visit Ebola-affected countries

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks during a news conference after meeting with Singaporean officials in Singapore August 3, 2015. REUTERS/Edgar Su

BEIJING (Reuters) - Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi leaves this week on a visit to three of the African nations hardest hit by an outbreak of the Ebola virus, the Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday.

Wang will leave on Saturday for a three-day visit to Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea, the ministry said in a brief statement, without giving further details.

Wang is now in Southeast Asia, where he will attend a regional security summit this week.

Ebola has killed more than 11,200 people in West Africa since it broke out in December 2013.

China, Africa’s biggest trading partner, has sent hundreds of medical workers to Africa and contributed aid of more than $120 million to the anti-Ebola effort, after initially facing criticism for not doing enough.

Many big companies in China have invested in Africa, tapping the continent’s rich vein of resources to fuel the Asian giant’s economic growth over the past couple of decades.

About 200 operate in West Africa, where Ebola has been at its most lethal.

Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Clarence Fernandez

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