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U.S. national zoo to return giant pandas to China

Reporter TVBS News Staff
Release time:2023/11/07 16:01
Last update time:2023/11/07 16:01
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U.S. national zoo to return giant pandas to China (AP) U.S. national zoo to return giant pandas to China
U.S. national zoo to return giant pandas to China (AP)

BEIJING (TVBS News) — The Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington, D.C., is set to send three giant pandas back to China next Wednesday (Nov. 15), which could result in the U.S. being without a giant panda for the first time in half a century.

Under current agreements, all giant pandas rented by the United States are due to return to China in 2024, and no new agreements have been signed yet.

 

Over the past year, pandas rented to various countries have been gradually returning to China due to the end of their rental agreements.

Analysts point to rising U.S.-China tensions, and high rental and upkeep costs as accelerating lessee countries' decisions to either return the pandas early or not renew the contracts.

As part of its panda diplomacy, China has sent 21 giant pandas to various countries since 2014, 13 of which went to Europe. The average lease time has been extended from 10 to 15 years, and the details of these rental contracts are becoming more and more secretive.
 

According to the agreement, if a panda were to die in a zoo during the rental period, China could claim damages ranging from NT$16 million to NT$32 million from the country of lease.

Taiwan Affairs

#giant pandas#China#United States#Smithsonian’s National Zoo#rental agreements#panda diplomacy#rising tensions#giant pandas returning to China#U.S.-China tensions#rental and upkeep costs
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