"The changes in the Middle East, in the global economy, make our reality more complicated. Nevertheless, there is one thing that is not complicated, and that is Israel's need to strengthen its economic presence in the international arena. Two decades into the twenty-first century, it seems that the world is abandoning the great ideologies of the twentieth century and returning to the naked interests that characterized the nineteenth century, and there is less pretense," president of the State of Israel Reuven Rivlin said today at the "Globes" Israel Business Conference.
Rivlin said that Israel needed to exploit its special abilities. "The fact that we are a power in security and science and that we are a force for progress in the world gives us a very strong position. Today, Israeli technology is to be found in every Intel processor, and at Facebook, at Google, and at Amazon.
"A large part of the world's hardware and software industry comes from Israel, and that gives us a highly significant geo-political lever. When they need your abilities and brains, it's less easy to join in anti-Israeli initiatives at the UN. But that isn’t enough: as long as our exports mostly depend on a special kind of mind, our ability will be limited. There are two further fronts on which we must develop: life science, and agriculture."
On the crisis at pharmaceuticals giant Teva, Rivlin said, "We all feel the upset at Teva, but this is the time to recall the conditions that enabled Teva to flourish and prosper for many years. This is the time to raise the level of research and academic prowess, and reinforce the medical daring that have brought Nobel prizes to Israel. This is the time to help this industry overcome and mature, and to extract the most from its ability to contribute, both to the labor market and to Israel's world standing."
Rivlin called for the construction of a long-term vision that would ensure the realization of Israel's potential in the world. "The time is ripe for creating a vision and a general strategy for the next 30 years, as a coordinated process involving the government and the private market. Within that, there is room for looking at joint action with the Jewish Diaspora on this and other matters, and for creating a new axis of partnership. We would like to strive for a reality in which Israel the innovator and Israel with all its capabilities, together with Diaspora Jewry, will be a main partner in dealing with global development problems."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 10, 2018
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