China to build massive £1.1bn panda conservation area

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The Bank of China has pledged at least 10 billion yuan (£1.1 billion) to create a massive giant panda conservation park in south-western Sichuan province.

China’s forestry ministry announced on Thursday an agreement between the bank and the provincial government to finance the Giant Panda National Park’s construction by 2023.

The park aims to bolster the local economy while improving breeding conditions for wild pandas living in the mountainous region.

The ministry said it will measure 5 million acres (2 million hectares), making it more than twice the size of Yellowstone National Park in the United States.

Giant pandas are China’s unofficial national mascot and live mainly in the Sichuan mountains.