TEL AVIV: Deals worth $4.3 billion (excluding defence) have been signed by India and Israeli companies on the first CEO’s Forum held in Tel Aviv on Thursday.
Under the orchestration of Prime Ministers Narendra Modi and Benjamin Netanyahu, almost 30 CEOs from both sides promised to power the economic and investment relationship.
The business leaders finalized the $40 million innovation fund announced on Wednesday urged both governments to restart discussions on an FTA (free trade agreement) and investment protection pact to deepen economic ties.
By increasing direct flights, standardization of products and promotion of tourism and cultural exchanges, they simplified the registrations of the businesses. The aim is to increase bilateral trade from the present $4-5 billion to $20 billion in five years.
The CEOs asked the Israeli government for longer-term multiple entry business visas, change of rules for investors, opening up of the agriculture sector for tie-ups and knowledge transfer. I
“India should have more effective intellectual property protection,” said Israeli businessmen .They also sought more worker visas, smoother dispute resolution and ‘encouraged full utilization of buybacks, given the defence procurement from Israel’.
In their joint statement on Wednesday, the two governments acknowledged the validity of many of these recommendations.
“The two PMs tasked the India-Israel CEO Forum to come up with early recommendations to boost bilateral cooperation in innovation and entrepreneurship,” the statement said.
“The governments would work on granting of multiple entry visas to business people for up to five years and would begin negotiations on an investment protection agreement,” the statement included.
Israel will be the partner country for the annual Technology Summit to be held in India in 2018.
The strategic MOUs signed on Thursday include those between Texmaco and Leshman-Lesico; Alpha Design and Elbit Land Systems; Elcomm Innovations and Eccopia Scientific; Wipro and Israel Aerospace