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Alabama team staging virtual trade mission to Israel in May

The Alabama Department of Commerce and the Export Alabama Alliance will host a virtual trade mission to Israel on May 10-12 in preparation for an in-person trade mission to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem to take place later this year.

Alabama companies already exporting to Israel in addition to those looking to get started in this market are welcome to apply. The virtual trade mission is not meant to replace the in-person trade mission to Israel, but rather to better prepare companies for it.

Participating companies will have the opportunity to meet with potential business partners on one-on-one business matchmaking meetings in a virtual setting. The trade mission will be multi-industry.

“At a time when businesses face continued challenges globally and domestically, we are looking to deepen and strengthen ties with our long-term ally, Israel, which is a logical choice for a virtual trade mission,” said Greg Canfield, Secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce.

GROWING TRADE

The United States is Israel’s single largest trading partner, and Israel is the second-largest trading partner for the U.S. in the Middle East. Since signing the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in 1985, U.S.-Israel trade has grown six-fold. Nearly all non-agricultural trade tariffs between the U.S. and Israel have been eliminated.

Despite regional geopolitical challenges, Israel has a stable, strong economy. Indeed, business between Alabama and Israel continues to be strong. Alabama’s exports to Israel in 2020 totaled $49 million, an increase of nearly 27% from 2019.

“We have found that virtual events leading up to an in-person trade mission can be very beneficial in that they allow companies to make initial contacts, learn more about the market to be visited and pave the way for a more productive trip,” said Hilda Lockhart, director of the Office of International Trade for the Alabama Department of Commerce.

Key target sectors for U.S. exports to Israel include safety & security, healthcare, information and communication technologies, and defense.

For more information on the virtual trade mission, contact Beau Lore at the Alabama Department of Commerce, Beau.Lore@commerce.alabama.gov or 334-324-7525.

(Courtesy of Made in Alabama)