Tue. Oct 19th, 2021

The UAE’s economy minister said on Monday that the country wanted to strengthen its business ties with Israel by $ 1 trillion dollars.

By Bloomberg

The United Arab Emirates is seeking to strengthen economic ties with Israel to more than $ 1 trillion in the coming decade, Economy Minister Abdulla Bin Touq said on Monday, strengthening a long-standing relationship that has already yielded billions of dollars in business.

The Gulf country has signed more than 60 memoranda of understanding with Israel since the normalization of relations in 2020 and expects an ‘influx’ of trade in the next two years, Bin Touq said at a US virtual conference, where he leads a high-level business delegation. The UAE looks at sectors including defense, energy and food security.

“We have $ 600 to $ 700 million in bilateral trade, we have billions of dollars in funds announced jointly between the two countries, and we are moving to so many areas of economic opportunity,” he said. ‘We want to create more than $ 1 billion in economic activity in the coming decade.

These transactions include the acquisition of Mubadala Investment Co. ‘s $ 1 billion purchase of Delek, listed in Tel Aviv, in an Israeli gas field, completed this month.

The so-called Abraham Accords were a historic breakthrough, praised by leaders, including then-US President Donald Trump, as a step toward peace in the Middle East. The UAE was the first Arab nation after Egypt and Jordan to formally recognize Israel.

The Israeli government said at the time that the deal would lead to billions of dollars in investment. Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan also recognized Israel after intense US diplomacy

This outreach was described by Palestinians as a betrayal and caused some embarrassment during the 11-day war in Gaza, but did not thwart efforts to establish diplomatic and economic relations.

The UAE announced earlier this month that it would deepen its trade ties with the fast-growing economies in Asia and Africa and attract $ 150 billion in foreign investment as it faces increasing competition from local heavyweight Saudi Arabia.

UAE to grow trade in Asia, Africa and invest $ 150 billion (2)

(Revised with quotes, context)

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