Israel looks forward to better ties with China under BRI

Added On March 15, 2019

A high-ranking Israeli official has said in an interview that Israel is expecting better economic and trade ties with China, as the Belt and Road initiative (BRI) is pushing forward.
Economy Report has more.
Hagai Shagrir, head of the Asia and Pacific Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel, said the Belt and Road Initiative is a long-run vision and a "positive" initiative.
Shagrir spoke highly of the infrastructure projects in Israel being built by Chinese companies that he had visited.
SOUNDBITE(ENGLISH): HAGAI SHAGRIR, Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs
"We see also Chinese infrastructure companies doing business in Israel. And all in all we are happy about that and think they are doing good professional work they stand by schedule. So our overall experience with them is very positive."
Meanwhile, Shagrir said Israel is also trying to see where it can contribute to the development of the BRI.
Israel is looking for more economic opportunities created by the initiative, through joining projects and providing solutions that Israel is good at,like water technology and agriculture.
With regards to China's opening-up efforts, Shagrir?hailed China's decision to open its market wider to the world and open more sectors of the Chinese economy to foreign investment.
SOUNDBITE(ENGLISH): HAGAI SHAGRIR, Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs
"The fact that China is willing to open up its market even more I think this is also a very important and a positive message for the whole world as well as to Israel."
Having witnessed the enormous changes that China has made, Shagrir?highly appreciated the unbelievable economic and social development of China during the past 20 years.
SOUNDBITE(ENGLISH): HAGAI SHAGRIR, Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs
"It's quite evident that China's role today and contribution to world economy is undisputed."
According to Shagrir, Israel's exports to China reached around 5 billion U.S. dollars in 2018, while China's exports to Israel hit 7 billion U.S. dollars.