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Israel Working on Special Economic Relationship with China

PM Netanyahu and Chinese Pres. Xi Jinping. Photo courtesy of Haim Zach / GPO

Israel is seeking to be on an exclusive list—nations receiving investment from China. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, following his recent visit to China, noted in Sunday’s cabinet meeting that while China isn’t investing around the world right now, Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed to consider that China have a specific investment policy for the Jewish State.

“China recently decided to restrict, to completely halt, its external investments for its own reasons – I am talking about the world, not Israel,” said Netanyahu in comments released by his office. “In light of my request, the President of China said that he was prepared to consider an exception for Israel, meaning that Chinese investments in the high-tech and other sectors would continue.” And that’s not the only special arrangement in the works between Israel and China.

Netanyahu noted that China granted Israel “a unique status that it has with no other country in the world as a principal partner in developing innovation.” While he pointed out that China has a similar, but different relationship with Switzerland, the Chinese “took care to emphasize the importance that they ascribe to this link with Israel vis-à-vis technology and innovation.”

But the Israel-Chinese relationship is about more than just high-level governmental arrangements. Business between Israel and China is growing too. Netanyahu said that during the China visit, approximately 25 Israeli companies signed deals worth roughly $2 billion.

Netanyahu said it was apparent that “China is very much tightening its links with Israel.”

Said the Israeli leader, “These developments are very important both to the Israeli economy and Israel’s citizens, and to the strengthening diplomatic status of the State of Israel in the world vis-à-vis the major powers and many other countries.”

(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, March 26, 2017)

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