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Do not depend on them: the Israeli Ministry of the Economy and Industry disengages from Turkey and finds trade alternatives

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Finding new trade opportunities with friendly countries and switching to purchases from within the Israeli economy - the Israeli Ministry of the Economy is optimistic and conveys that the only one affected by Turkey's move is Turkey itself.

Turkey is creating a self-directed crisis with its own hands, by making a bad choice in its internal and political interests of supporting terrorism, but in the process, it is seriously damaging its economy and incurring losses of billions of dollars every year.

The consequences for the Israeli economy are not expected to be too significant in the long term if the private market cuts its ties with imports from Turkey and moves to import alternatives from other stable and friendly countries.

The relevant government ministries, such as the economy, foreign affairs, finance, etc., work intensively together with the private sector, both in the local and international arena, to find import alternatives and to assist in their implementation.

The Ministry of Economy will allocate 5 million shekels to assist exporters in marketing and locating alternative markets. Regarding imports, the regulators are involved in helping to find import alternatives and local production, including regulatory relief and the release of barriers.

In response, the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and the Economy are working together with other bodies in international and legal channels, as a response to the violations of the trade agreements between Turkey and Israel and the violation of the foreign trade principles of the World Trade Organization (WTO). There is also a dialogue with the international car manufacturers to find alternative solutions for importing cars produced in factories in Turkey.

Next week there will be an importers’ conference led by the Minister of Economy, the President of the Union of the Chambers of Commerce, and the Director of Foreign Trade Administration at the Ministry of the Economy.

Minister of Economy and Industry, Nir Barkat: “Erdoğan’s unilateral step will mainly harm the already shaky image of the Turkish economy, the businessmen in Turkey – who are expressing frustration – and of course the Turkish people. We are working with international forums such as the World Trade Organization and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), at the same time as developing trade alternatives, with an emphasis on imports, together with old and reliable partners in the Mediterranean basin. It should be understood that there is no reason to rely on a country that does not know how to ensure that the supply and transport chains operate according to political whims.

In 2023, the import of goods and services from Turkey amounted to approximately 5.2 billion dollars. Of this amount, about 2.8 billion dollars were imported to the construction industry. All the products imported from Turkey are not unique and available for purchase by Israeli importers in the free market, and a significant part of them can be produced and purchased in Israel.

To reduce the costs of maritime shipping, most of the efforts to find import alternatives are focused on the countries of the Mediterranean basin which are also reliable trade partners such as Italy. The expansion of trade relations with these countries is also expected to affect Israeli exports to them and to establish a reliable trade network of the countries of the Mediterranean basin, something that will benefit Israel and the entire region.

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