Sichuan Auto Industry has agreed to pay a million yuan, or about $150,000, to “adopt” the newly-arrived-from-Washington, Tai Shan, for life.
The giant panda who left the Washington National Zoo for China will still join China’s breeding program and stay under scientists’ care at the government-run Bifengxia Panda Base. But the company will pay for food, medical care and other daily expenses.
China Digital Times reports that Cao Guodong, the automaker’s deputy general manager, said interest in the panda is related to efforts to develop an electric car to sell in the US. That is not a statement that is easy to fathom.