Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Economy to Strengthen Israeli Exports with New Tools
The Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Economy are expanding business activity in foreign markets, with a view to assisting exporters. The assistance focuses on the integration of Israeli companies in tenders and in international projects and on the promotion of exports to India, China and Africa.
The two ministries have decided to establish a fund within the World Bank, with funding by the Israeli government, that will act in the interests of both Israeli industry and the World Bank. The launch of the fund will constitute a significant milestone in expanding the cooperation between Israeli industry and the World Bank.
In addition, the ministries have agreed on the provision of support for surveys for tenders and international projects. Often, authorities that commission projects (e.g. national planning authorities, regulators in the field of infrastructure, water and energy, etc.) require a contending or executing company to present a feasibility study or to set up a pilot in order to prove execution capability. Owing to financing difficulties, many companies are forced to forego participation in tenders. Therefore, an assistance fund has been established within the Ministry of Economy that participates in 50 percent of the costs involved in the submission of candidacy for a tender and conducting a feasibility survey, up to a maximum of NIS 800,000 per company.
Another decision is to finance activity for the promotion of exports to Africa, India and China. The government will transfer additional budget sources to the Export Institute, which will be channeled to activity in the target country – for example, for setting up national pavilions at exhibitions, sending specialized delegations and hiring expert consultants in the different sectors. The Ministry of Economy has also expanded the activity of the Foreign Trade Administration in Africa with the aim of helping Israeli companies trade on that continent.
The Minister of Finance, Mr. Yair Lapid, said: "The strengthening of Israeli exports will help the Israeli economy penetrate new markets, drive an innovation-based economy, increase industrial productivity and realize the relative advantages we enjoy in emerging markets."
The Minister of Economy, Mr. Naftali Bennett, said: "The bolstering of economic ties with other countries in the world, especially countries such as India and China, is important from the national-economic perspective of Israel. It is of crucial importance to open up to new markets, thereby reducing the Israeli economy's dependence on certain markets. The assistance will make it possible for Israeli exports to reach impressive achievements, increase exports and expand the entire industrial activity of the Israeli economy."
· Total exports (including diamonds and services) in 2012: 85 billion dollars
· Total exports (excluding diamonds and services) in 2012: 46 billion dollars
· Exports of goods (including diamonds) in the first 11 months of 2013: 49 billion dollars (same period last year: 48.1 billion dollars)
· Exports of goods (including diamonds) to Africa in 2012: 1.32 billion dollars (2.1% of total exports of goods in 2012)
· Exports of goods (including diamonds) to China in 2012: 2.7 billion dollars (4.37% of total exports of goods in 2012)
· Exports of goods (including diamonds) to China in the first 11 months of 2013: 1.9 billion dollars
· Exports of goods (including diamonds) to India in 2012: 2.4 billion dollars (3.95% of total exports in 2012).
· Exports of goods (including diamonds) to India in the first 11 months of 2013: 1.7 billion dollars