Billionaire Li Ka-Shing Underwent Back Surgery After Golf Injury

  • Surgery in U.S. was to mend condition associated with old age
  • Tycoon left for surgery in the U.S. in late September

Hong Kong’s richest man, Li Ka-shing, recently underwent surgery in the U.S. after the 87-year-old tycoon injured his back while exercising, according to one of his closest confidantes.

Solina Chau, executive director at the Li Ka-shing Foundation and head of the Li-backed Horizons Ventures fund, told reporters in Shantou city, southeast China, that Li had the surgery to treat lumbar spinal stenosis. Horizons media representative Wendy Yu confirmed Chau’s comments, adding that the injury is nothing too serious.

Lumbar spinal stenosis is a medical condition associated with the degeneration of the spine due commonly to the effects of aging.

The surgery came at a sensitive time for Li. In late September, he issued a rebuttal statement after the Chinese Communist Part’s official People’s Daily said in a commentary that Li’s "eye-catching" reduction of investments in China cast a shadow over the nation. Li left for the U.S. a day after making that statement, according to Chau.

Radio Television Hong Kong reported Li instructed his son to keep 80 percent of his foundation’s funds invested in projects in Greater China.

— With assistance by Clement Tan, and Fion Li

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