Israeli exports to UK quadrupled in last decade

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Israeli exports to UK quadrupled in last decade

Figures published this week show a big boost to bilateral trade since 2010, suggesting the limited impact of the BDS movement on ties

Israeli and British flags  (Jewish News)
Israeli and British flags (Jewish News)

Israeli exports to the UK grew by almost 300 percent over the past decade, according to official figures published on Monday.

Israel’s Foreign Trade Administration (FTA) said the country’s overall exports increased by almost 70 percent, but exports to the UK grew by a whopping 286 percent since 2010.

Last year the British government said UK-Israel bilateral trade was around £4 billion annually, with particular cross-border business in areas such as medicines, technology and defence.

The latest Israeli figures show how ineffective the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement has been over the past decade, with economic ties between the UK and Israel growing year-on-year.

Last year the two countries signed a “trade continuity” agreement to remove any potential new trade obstacles such as tariffs or barriers between the UK and Israel in the immediate aftermath of Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union.

The FTA said the value of all Israeli exports – including products and services – to all countries in 2019 was 4.5 percent higher than in 2018, with Israeli high-tech exports leading the charge. Israeli services exports grew by 11.7 percent last year alone.

Israeli firms seeking to establish themselves in Europe have long looked to the UK do so, with 300 small to medium-sized Israeli firms now based here. Many list on London’s stock exchanges.

However, it is not just in the UK and the US that Israeli firms have sought to trade, and Israel’s export markets around the world have grown increasingly varied, with “significant growth” in Asia and Latin America.

The FTA said exports to China had now increased five-fold, while other important markets include Turkey, Brazil, Chile, Taiwan, and Japan. To a lesser extent, Israeli exports find their way to Peru, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Australia.

Israeli Minister of Economy and Industry Eli Cohen said: “Export data for the past decade is proof of the good economic situation of Israel’s economy.”

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