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Source: United Kingdom
12 March 2014

PM leads business delegation to Israel and the Palestinian territories

The 2 day visit to Israel and the Palestinian territories will focus on the opportunities that peace would bring.

The Prime Minister will use the visit to discuss how we can strengthen ties between the UK and Israel, and with the Palestinian territories with the aim of promoting economic growth and creating jobs for all.

Fresh from opening one of the world’s largest trade fairs in Hanover at the start of the week, the Prime Minister will push Britain’s extraordinary tech and innovation sector in Israel - home to more start-up companies than anywhere else in the world.

Speaking ahead of his visit, the Prime Minister said:

I’m very much looking forward to my first trip Israel and the Palestinian territories since becoming Prime Minister.

Secretary Kerry’s efforts to secure agreement on a negotiating framework that could lead to peace are entering a critical phase. And I’ll be using my visit to support those peace efforts. I want to encourage Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas to build on the strong leadership they have shown so far and to take the final difficult steps towards peace.

The prize could be great: a stable, prosperous Middle East with a sovereign and viable Palestinian State living in peace alongside a secure Israel at the heart of it. A secure future. A prosperous future. That’s what we should all set our sights on.

There’s a real opportunity to strengthen our commercial relationship with Israel. Our tech partnership is the strongest of any in the world and we should capitalise on this - creating more jobs back in Britain and delivering economic security for hard-working families. I’ve got a plane load of innovative British companies coming with me and we’ll be linking them up with Israeli businesses so they can forge new partnerships that will give them a competitive edge in the global race.

We also want to see the development of the Palestinian economy and I’ll be setting out new UK support to help Palestinians businesses become more competitive. To create new jobs and new industries that will also benefit Israelis next door, where a vibrant economy will find new partners.

So it will be an important visit. A visit focused on the future. We are 3 leaders determined to keep our citizens safe, and to secure a better future for them all and I believe we can help to achieve that by working together to create opportunities for our businesses, jobs for our people and by working towards peace.


Economic growth in the Palestinian territories

The Prime Minister also wants to support economic growth in the Palestinian territories, recognising that this is a vital part of providing Palestinian people with a prosperous and stable future.

The Prime Minister’s business delegation, including Trade Minister Lord Livingston, will meet with leading Palestinian businesses to explore the possibilities in a range of sectors including IT, construction and agri-business, consistent with Secretary Kerry’s plans to transform the Palestinian economy in parallel to negotiations to achieve peace.

The Prime Minister will set out further UK support to create business opportunities and jobs in the Palestinian territories, including:

And the British Council is announcing a new partnership with the Portland Trust to bring young Palestinian entrepreneurs and business people to the UK for short work placements during the coming year.



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