European Commission Vice President Antonio Tajani visited Israel from 30 October to 1 November to explore new opportunities for joint work. The visit was aimed at strengthening the relations in the fields of industrial cooperation and entrepreneurship with particular focus on areas such as innovation, standards, satellite navigation programmes, SMEs and tourism.
On the occasion of the visit, Vice President Tajani and the Minister of Industry, Trade and Labour of Israel Shalom Simhon signed two joint statements of intent to improve cooperation in the fields of space and tourism.
The joint declaration on tourism recognises the importance of this sector for growth and employability and expresses the desire to strengthen bilateral tourism cooperation. Several actions have been agreed in order to facilitate tourism flows by promoting travel in the respective low seasons, thereby optimising the use of available spare airline and accommodation capacity. It was also decided to seize the opportunity of the current negotiation of an aviation agreement between Israel and the EU to support the development of an efficient bilateral air transport that could facilitate tourism.
European leaders could learn from the example set by Israel as they work to rescue the region from financial crisis, Tajani said at a conference on Israeli-European business relations in Tel Aviv. He also said that “Israel is a good example of how a country with a business- friendly environment is better resistant to the crisis”. He cited Israel’s 4.7 percent growth rate in 2010 as proof that it had emerged strongly from global financial worries.