Japan requests China to loan panda to Sendai


Japan is negotiating with China to lend a giant panda to a zoo in Sendai City for the sake of children scarred by the March earthquake and tsunami.

Sendai Mayor Emiko Okuyama told a news conference that she has contacted the Chinese ambassador in Tokyo and made the request for a panda to be sent on loan to the Yagiyama Zoological Park, TBS reported Monday.

Next year is the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and China next year, although the relationship has been strained recently.

Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is considering a December trip to China to smooth over contentious issues and he may ask President Jintao personally to allow a giant panda to be loaned to Japan, TBS reported.

Japan last received two pandas from China in March when two 5-year-olds arrived at Tokyo's Ueno Zoo. Tokyo is renting the pandas for $950,000 a year.

About 1,600 pandas live in the wild, mostly in Sichuan. Eleven pandas are in Japan.

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to Sendai...? No, Animal Rights Groups should object to it.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I don't think anyone wants to see a panda die from radiation. Horribly insensitive and calculated move by the Japanese government to try to allay the fears of its citizenry by basically slow nuking a panda.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

LordManji, I believe you are right. The best thing to do right now is call PETA. That's not right to bring animals to that region. It would be better if they took the children out of that area altogether.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

I don't think China would be too happy to see a panda die in a zoo in Japan..?

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

This is not a time for Panda diplomacy. Use the money for the people still living in shelters (temporary housing).

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Tokyo is renting the pandas for $950,000 a year

Is it just me that thinks this is ridiculous? nearly $80,000/month? Sure they are cute but holy cow that is a lot of money.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

its a nice gesture to the children, but I think they should put that money into rebuilding. I think if you ship a monkey from Tokyo to Sendai the children will be equally happy.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Most likely the taxpayers are paying for it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm guessing the panda is going to help pay for itself when it gets sent into the Fukushima reactor to help with the cold shutdown.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Is the Japanese govt. stupid or what? Why spending such a huge amount of money on loaning Pandas. Anyone still wonders why the economy is in an endless recession?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Geez, Pandas more important than people, Japan and China are closer than they like to think.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

What is $80.000/year to a nations goverment works with billions.

Those same $80.000/year are wasted multiple times over or fall into the cracks and no-one raises an eye-brow.

Put things into the perspective of the bigger pictures, that amount for the goverment is like handing out a 10yen coin to a child.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Replace "year" with "month" above.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The one in "Fierce Creatures" would be a cheaper version. Pandas are boring...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The Sendai mayor is great at wasting money, I don't think she will be re-elected next time. In addition to wasting money on the panda she has also spent money on an Anpanman "museum".

She has closed a fairly new swimming pool and leisure centre located near a subway station on the grounds that people could use private gyms. Then, a few weeks later she announced the building of a new pool in an area difficult to reach by public transport (but within the city and not far from an existing pool).

She has done almost nothing to help rebuild damaged areas of the city and rarely visited the evacuation centres. When she did visit she just gave everyone there a lecture and left without talking to anyone.

Meanwhile, my residence tax has soared this year (unlike my income).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

as a brotherhood, china will allow it.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Why to make a fuss about it. It is just a bear.

Any zoo employee can dress in panda suit and mime it by chewing about eucalyptus or whatever, no one will notice it.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

ratpackOCT. 18, 2011 - 09:30AM JST Tokyo is renting the pandas for $950,000 a year Is it just me that thinks this is ridiculous? nearly $80,000/month? Sure they are cute but holy cow that is a lot of money.

Could someone be kind enough to lend me a make and female Panda for just a few weeks :)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why not give each child a stuffed panda toy instead? It's cheaper and would spare endangered pandas the agony of radiation.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Ahh China. The land of compassionate people. Listen, they don't care about their own yet alone the Japanese:

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Just saw on Nihon TV that it is all the rage now in China to die your pet DOG, like a panda, tiger, what ever. How about just getting a big dog?? Coloring it like a panda?? Both Chinese and Japanese dog and panda lovers can have their cake and it eat too??

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I don't think radiation is a problem in Sendai, but safety still is. They still get some pretty big tremors and I wonder what the state of the zoo is after the original March 11th quake. So, while I think it would be a nice thing for kids and their families, and a gesture of good will from China, I'm not sure it's a great idea. What's more, these things cost a fortune to feed and house, and I think that money would be better spent with rebuilding in Sendai. Ask for a promise to get a panda at a later date.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The land of compassionate people. Listen, they don't care about their own yet alone the Japanese:

Don't be so quick to overgeneralize just because you hate them. Didn't China send monetary and material aid to Japan in the aftermath of the 3/11 disaster?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Sendai Zoo is shockingly disgusting because the cages are too small for the animals in them and don't seem to be well-maintained or represent the animals' natural environment.

Hope China says no!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

One good reason for China to accept the request : the founder of The Republic of China Dr. Sun ( by means of a revolution in 1911 ) was educated, among other places, in Sendai..and they lend it / them out free if charge in commemoration of the 100th anniversary !

Forget about the comments such as 'city of death' or 'idiots' by bureaucrats in Tokyo, pandas can help alleviate the nasty hardship the children experienced in the past months. From the kids' view, who cares about politics, budgets etc.. The panda is at least one real good thing these grown-ups can do for them ?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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