February 12, 2012 – Source: The Ottawa Citizen
Canada is getting a pair of pandas. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has officially confirmed Saturday that China has agreed to loan two giant pandas to zoos in Toronto & Calgary for a period of five years each costing $10 million. “The pandas’ visit to Canada represents an important step forward in the blossoming relationship between our two peoples.” Millions of dollars more will be spent to prepare the zoos and to take care for the animals, including about $200,000 or so a year in bamboo costs and to train Canadian panda handlers with help from the Chinese. However, they expect to fully recover the costs from new sponsorship and an estimated on million or more additional visitors each year when the pandas arrive.