February 9, 2020 / 12:09 PM / 19 days ago

China allocates $10.26 billion to fight coronavirus

Staff members wearing face masks place vegetables onto shelves at a JD.com's 7Fresh chain before the store opens, as the country is hit by an outbreak of the novel coronavirus, in Yizhuang town, Beijing, China February 8, 2020. Picture taken February 8, 2020. REUTERS/Tingshu Wang - RC2XWE9GX2YN

BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s finance ministry said on Sunday all levels of government had allocated a total of 71.85 billion yuan (8 billion pounds) as of Saturday afternoon to fight coronavirus.

The ministry will deploy the funds to ensure that members of public can afford diagnosis and treatment, it said in a statement on its website.

The funds will also be used to ensure that efforts of every region to fight the virus are not hampered by financial constraints, it added.

Reporting by Judy Hua and David Stanway; Editing by Mark Potter

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