A Shorten Labor Government will keep iconic pandas Wang Wang and Fu Ni in Adelaide, extending an agreement between the Federal Government and Zoo SA for the next five years.
As one of just 22 zoos worldwide to host pandas and the only location in Australasia, all South Australians are proud that Wang Wang and Fu Ni have called Adelaide home for more than a decade.
The love for the pandas is reflected by the more than 400,000 people who visited the Adelaide Zoo last year, the third highest attendance figures in their 135 year history.
Fu Ni is so popular that she won silver in the 2014 Giant Panda Awards ‘Most Popular Panda Outside of China’ category.
“We are very pleased to hear a Labor government will commit to extending the lease to keep our Giant Pandas at Adelaide Zoo,” Acting Chief Executive Sarah Brown said.
“Since Giant Pandas arrived in 2009, Adelaide Zoo welcomed more than 3.8 million visitors and we know from economic analysis that having pandas in South Australia has generated $33.5 million in economic output in 2010.
“Wang Wang and Fu Ni have been consistently popular drawcards to SA in the last nine years, with many visitors travelling from all over the country and world to see them.
“We are proud to be home to Australasia’s only Giant Pandas and would be thrilled to continue this important conservation work and keep this incredible species in South Australia for visitors to experience.”
Adelaide Zoo is part of the international Giant Panda research, conservation and breeding program designed to preserve this vulnerable species.
Labor’s announcement will extend the loan agreement on cooperation in Giant Panda conservation which is a crucial component in the worldwide fight to protect pandas.
As ambassadors for the close relationship between Australia and China, Wang Wang and Fu Ni represent our two nations’ shared commitment to the preservation of the world’s natural heritage.
This announcement today will ensure another generation of our children and even more tourists will have a chance to see Wang Wang and Fu Ni in Adelaide.
Authorised by Noah Carroll, ALP, Canberra.