Israel and Germany discussed ways to further strengthen economic relations.
Israeli Minister of Economy and Industry Eli Cohen met last week with German Minister of Economy and Energy Brigitte Zypries, during which the two discussed ways to further strengthen economic relations.
Germany is Israel’s third most important trade partner and Israel is Germany’s second most important trade partner in the Middle East.
The scope of trade between the two countries reached $7 billion in 2016, with Israeli exports reaching $1.6 billion, a 3 percent growth from 2015.
The two countries’ economy ministries run a joint program for cooperation in industrial R&D. Since its inception, 24 joint projects in different industrial fields were launched.
There are a number of leading German companies that operate in Israel, including Siemens, SAP, and Deutsche Telekom.
In order to leverage bilateral economic and industrial cooperation and development, Cohen and Zypries agreed to hold another joint Innovation Day in 2018 that will focus on industry, especially advanced manufacturing, as well as cooperation on R&D.
During the Innovation Day held in Israel in 2015, a business delegation of 100 German companies came to Israel and attended a gathering with hundreds of Israeli companies. The event led to business and technological cooperation between Israeli and German companies in a variety of industrial fields.
Cohen stated that Israel views Germany as “an important trade partner that has succeeded in maintaining its creative industry,” and, therefore, cooperation between the two countries is “extremely significant” for helping Israel learn from Germany.
Using the German model, he hopes to increase the role of industry in the Israeli economy to 20 percent.
“I hope business cooperation between companies from both countries will lead to investments by German companies in Israel in the field of advanced manufacturing,” he added.
By: Max Gelber, United with Israel