Trade between Israel and Russia rose by $380 million in the first half of 2017, in comparison with the corresponding period of 2016. This represents a 25% increase. The figures were announced by Minister of Environmental Protection Zeev Elkin and Temur Ben Yehuda, chairman of the Israeli Russian Business Council protection, at a conference in Moscow on relations between the two countries, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) reports.
“There is still great potential for increase in trade and there is much work ahead of us,” JTA reports Elkin as saying concerning talks that have been taking place since 2013 on a free trade agreement between Israel and Russia.
Ben Yehuda, said that the increase in trade was thanks to the attractiveness of the Russian market to Israeli business people and of the Israeli market to Russians. “We are not only conducting dialogue on increasing trade, we are also signing major agreements between Israel and Russian firms, including Watergen, Assuta and many others,” JTA quotes him as saying.
Israel and Russia have been tightening cooperation on security issues connected with Syria, where Russia has intervened to assist President Bashar Assad suppress an armed insurrection against his regime that began in 2011. According to Israeli press reports, however, President Vladimir Putin of Russia has not acceded to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's request that his country should stop selling arms to Syria that could fall into the hands of Hezbollah, the Lebanese-based organization that threatens Israel and whose fighters have been supporting Assad in Syria.
Trade between Russia and the EU and US has been falling because of the sanctions imposed on Russia after its incursion into Ukraine.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on October 1, 2017
© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2017