KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 25 — The return of panda cubs Yi Yi and Sheng Yi to China on August 29 will be carried out, in accordance with the International Giant Panda Conservation Agreement between Malaysia and China.
The Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change (NRECC) said the return of the two panda cubs was delayed for several years due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Giant Panda pair of Fu Wa and Feng Yi was loaned to the Malaysian government in 2014 for ten years, in conjunction with the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Malaysia and China.
To date, the panda pair, which were renamed Xing Xing and Liang Liang (female), has given birth to three cubs, namely Nuan Nuan on August 18, 2015; Yi Yi on January 14, 2018; and Sheng Yi on May 30, 2021.
Nuan Nuan was sent back to China in 2017, the ministry said in a statement today.
Last week, Zoo Negara deputy president Rosly@Rahmat Ahmat Lana said China has yet to set an official date for the return of Yi Yi and Sheng Yi.
Meanwhile, NRECC said the giant panda couple Xing Xing and Liang Liang celebrated their 17th birthday yesterday at the Giant Panda Conservation Centre, Zoo Negara.
The event was organised by the China Cultural Centre Kuala Lumpur in collaboration with Zoo Negara and attended by NRECC deputy secretary-general (natural resources) Abdul Wahid Abu Salim.
Also present were representatives from the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China, the Malaysia-China Chamber of Commerce and the Malaysian Zoological Society.
“NRECC hopes that the Giant Panda diplomacy can further strengthen understanding between Malaysia and China,” the statement said.