Israel, United Arab Emirates sign historic trade pact worth billions

0
12

May 31 (UPI) — Israel on Tuesday signed a multibillion dollar free trade agreement with United Arab Emirates, forging the largest deal ever between Israel and any Arab country.

The pact covers issues that include regulation, customs, services, government procurement, e-commerce, and protection of intellectual property rights.

Advertisement

Orna Barbivai, Israel’s minister of economy and industry, was in Dubai Tuesday when she signed the trade agreement with Abdulla bin Touq Al-Marri, the Emirati minister of economy.

The agreement reportedly covers 96% of the trade between the two Middle Eastern countries, which reached $885 million in 2021. Israel and UAE seek to increase annual bilateral trade to more than $10 billion over the next five years.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett praised the agreement in a post on Twitter and highlighting the leadership of the UAE’s new president, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Advertisement

In December, Bennett met with bin Zayed Al Nahyan, marking the first time any Israeli leader made an official visit to the UAE.

Tuesday’s agreement built on the momentum of the historic Abraham Accords of 2020, which stated that that “peace, diplomatic relations and full normalization of bilateral ties are hereby established between the United Arab Emirates and the State of Israel.”