News In Focus
UK Giant Panda Project is based in Edinburgh
The UK’s first ever breeding pair of Giant Pandas is coming to Edinburgh Zoo, thanks to a long-awaited deal put together by the UK and China, with legal support from McClure Naismith LLP.
The Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) has reached an agreement with the Wolong Breeding Centre in Sichuan Province in China to bring the Pandas to Scotland for ten years.
Giant Pandas exist in the wild only in China, and there are believed to be around just 1600 left in the wild. These amazing creatures are iconic and politically important animals in China and loan deals are of high diplomatic, cultural and political significance. Only seven countries in the world currently have Giant Pandas on loan from China.
The loan agreement has involved political representation at the highest level, with discussions between two UK Prime Ministers, the Chinese Premier, the UK Foreign Secretary and the First Minister of Scotland.
McClure Naismith has provided specialist advice on the structuring of the documentation at the heart of this important ten-year loan agreement, and will continue to advise on related issues going forward.
IP partner Euan Duncan, who is advising RZSS, said: “This achievement is the result of years of negotiation and planning and one of the primary reasons for this success has been the skill, tenacity and conservation experience and knowledge of the RZSS team. McClure Naismith is delighted to have advised on such a significant project that will play a key role in the global programme to protect and conserve Giant Pandas and looks forward to its continuing involvement. The project will also attract a large number of new visitors to Edinburgh, and have significant economic, cultural and political benefits.”