UK-Israel trade hit record high in 2014


Trade between the UK and Israel is at a record high according to the latest figures released by Israel's Central Bureau of Statistics.

Total bilateral trade amounted to £3.9 billion in 2014, an increase of more than 7 per cent from the previous year.

The figures revealed a 4.8 per cent increase in imports to the UK from Israel and a 12.9 per cent increase in exports from the UK to Israel.

Daniel Saunders, chief of staff of the economic and trade mission at the Israeli embassy in London, attributed the growth to increased activity in the hi-tech and pharmaceuticals sectors. He said: "These figures do not come as a surprise - they are part of the year-on-year trend of growing collaboration between our two countries.

"It's a sign of their interdependence on each other and the UK recognising that Israeli technology can strengthen its industry."


£3.9b - The total value of Israel-UK trade in 2014
4.8% - Increase in imports of Israeli goods into the UK

Representatives of Israeli start-up companies specialising in sports technology met British executives in the UK this week. The companies were selected by a panel of judges - including former England football manager Terry Venables and Lord Triesman, former chairman of the Football Association - to take part in the Future Sport 2015 delegation in London and Manchester.

Mr Saunders said: "This is the first time business collaboration on sports technology has been really explored between the two countries."

This month, Chelsea Football Club announced a deal with Israeli sports technology company Inplay to provide an app that would allow the club's supporters to discuss matches online.

Meanwhile, British and Israeli academics are to take part in a £1.2 million joint cyber security research project announced by the Cabinet Office.

There will be three partnerships - with two teams at Ramat Gan's Bar Ilan University working with the University of Bristol and University College London, and a University of Kent link-up with the University of Haifa.

Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude said the collaboration was the result of both countries leading the world in technological work.

He said: "This takes it on to the next level. It's very much a partnership."

The research work is part of an Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council initiative and will focus on cryptography, data anonymity and facial recognition.

The two countries signed a deal on digital co-operation a year ago. They are among the world's five leading digital nations alongside New Zealand, South Korea and Estonia.

The minister said he hoped the announcement would be a bulwark against boycotts. "This just illustrates that the whole boycott movement is splintered and a minority thing. Proper academics are interested in working with their counterparts," he said.

Mr Maude also announced a project aimed at improving cyber security in Britain based on the Israeli Talpiot scheme. It identifies individuals with exceptional skills and uses them in an "elite force" in government and the private sector.

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