China has cancelled a part of the debt owed by DR Congo to help the sub-Saharan giant fight the coronavirus epidemic, the Congolese presidency said on Thursday.
Foreign Minister Wang Yi made the gesture to put 180 million yuan ($28 million, 23 million euros) back into government coffers during a visit to the country this week.
Wang also offered a further $15 million to support wider development efforts.
China is a major investor in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and researchers from Johns Hopkins University in the US have estimated that Chinese entities have extended more than $2.4 billion in loans over the past two decades.
“The cancellation of the debt should enable the DRC to fight effectively against the Covid-19 pandemic,” the Congolese presidency said in a press release.
Since the first coronavirus cases were detected on March 10, DR Congo has officially registered 18,738 cases and 610 deaths.