"As President of the State of Israel, I deeply believe that Israel and Canada are natural partners. We are both vibrant democracies with a diverse and highly-educated work-force. We are both countries which view science, technology and innovation as pillars of our economy."
Attached photo credit: Mark Neiman (GPO)
Israel President Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin , Tuesday 2 April 2019 / 26 Adar II, opened the Israel-Canada Business Forum, attended by a delegation of senior business leaders who are accompanying the president on his visit. In order to explore possibilities of widening the existing cooperation between the two countries, representatives of Israeli and Canadian companies in the fields of health, homeland security, fintech, cyber and energy, participated in the forum. The Israeli delegation was headed by President of the Manufacturers’ Association Shraga Brosh and organized by the Israel Export Institute. Senior figures from the Canadian business community, including Minister for Democratic Institutions Karina Gould and President of the Toronto Region Board of Trade Janet De Silva, also participated in the event.
At the beginning of his remarks, the President Rivlin thanked President of the Toronto Region Board of Trade, the Manufacturers’ Association of Israel and the Israeli and Canadian partners, “who are bringing the Israel-Canada economic relationship to new heights.”
The president said, “Since our founding, 70 years ago, we continue to push boundaries, re-define reality, and find solutions for the problems of today and for the challenges of tomorrow. That is why Israel has more start-ups per capita than any other country. That is why hundreds of multi-national corporations have set up R and D centers in Israel. And that is why foreign direct investment in Israel continues to grow. As President of the State of Israel, I deeply believe that Israel and Canada are natural partners.”
He added, “We are both vibrant democracies with a diverse and highly-educated work-force. We are both countries which view science, technology and innovation as pillars of our economy. We both believe that sustainable development, cyber security, safe cities and saving lives are conditions for financial success.”
Canada was one of the first states with which the State of Israel signed a free trade agreement, with only the United States and the European Union preceding. Since then, the trade relationship has grown and developed. In 2012, an agreement on import duties was signed, and last year, the free trade agreement was upgraded and resigned.
The president noted, “The Government of Israel is committed to greater cooperation in the fields of health, homeland security, hi-tech and many more. Just recently we updated our free trade agreement, and continue to support the Canada-Israel Industrial R & D Foundation.”
The president wished the forum’s participants great success and expressed his hope that they would see results soon, saying in conclusion “when it comes to economic partnership between Israel and Canada, the only limits are the limits of our imagination.”
President of the Israel Manufacturers’ Association, Shraga Brosh: “I am honored to be leading the largest business delegation ever from Israel to Canada, and welcome the opportunity to allow us to develop the cooperation between our two countries from $1.1bn to over $2bn. I believe that this delegation is the starting-point for new Israeli-Canadian cooperation in the fields of innovation and economic development. We see similar future challenges for our business communities in the spheres of productivity, innovation, automation, data analysis in production technologies and more. Therefore, we want to encourage both sides to establish joint ventures, joint research and development, and technological cooperation.”