G20 Worried By Ebola Outbreak

The Ebola epidemic that is sweeping West Africa has been discussed by the G20 finance ministers for the first time.

In its communique after two days of talks, the G20 said it is concerned about the human cost of the disease and the potentially serious impacts on economic growth and stability in the affected countries and wider region.

“We underscore the importance of a coordinated international response,” it said.

Treasurer Joe Hockey, host of the Cairns event said this is a global challenge.

“Australia has just stepped up again to the plate with additional funding support for measures that will help to address the spread of the virus,” he told reporters at the close of the meeting.

Asked if the epidemic could derail the G20’s ambitions, Mr Hockey said: “Of course, there are always (such) events.

“But we need to be ambitious, we need to give people hope that tomorrow and the years beyond are going to be better than today.”