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Ministry of Finance Investment Promotion Campaign

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Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

Ministry of Finance Launches an International Public Information Campaign to Attract Foreign Investors to Israel

The Minister of Finance Dr. Yuval Steinitz, and Acting Director General of the Ministry of Finance, Mr. Doron Cohen, joined by leading members of the Israeli business community, headed on March 21 for Europe to attend the Bloomberg Sovereign Debt Conference, with the aim of promoting Israel as an economic haven and attractive investment center.

The delegation accompanying the minister included the Capital Market, Insurance and Savings Commissioner in the Ministry of Finance, Prof. Oded Sarig; the Chairman of the ISCAR company, Mr. Eitan Wertheimer; the General Manager of Intel Israel and Vice President of Intel International, Ms. Maxine Fassberg; the Chief Scientist in the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor, Mr. Avi Hasson; the CEO of the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, Ms. Esther Levanon, and the former Director General of the Ministry of Finance, Mr. Chaim Shani.

The activities of the minister and the delegation at the conference are one facet of an international public information campaign that is being launched by the Ministry of Finance to attract investments to Israel and exploit the opportunities presented by the complex global financial situation. The campaign is based on an understanding of the importance of foreign investments at the present juncture for sustaining economic growth.

The Israeli delegation to the conference was acting in collaboration with the Foreign Trade Administration in the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Bloomberg Sovereign Debt Conference

The Bloomberg Sovereign Debt Conference was held to discuss developments in the European debt crisis and assess opportunities for attractive and sustainable investments. At the conference, the Israeli delegation met with senior European policymakers and high-level executives of European financial institutions and spelled out to them the advantages of the Israeli economy against the background of today’s global economic challenges.

Remarks by Members of the Delegation

One of the principal panel discussions at the conference dealt with the Israeli economy as a current investment opportunity. When he spoke, Iscar Chairman Eitan Wertheimer concentrated on the advantages of Israel’s high quality manpower. “Competitiveness is determined by who is the first to reach the market with the most innovative product. To do so you have to wake up early, work fast or do both. And that is precisely the kind of people we have in Israel, very hungry people with the ability to connect with whoever offers an advantage.” He added that “the people in Israel are exposed to the latest technologies early and adapt to them very quickly…”

Maxine Fassberg, CEO of Intel Israel and VP of Intel International, said that “Intel initially came to Israel in 1974 and established its planning center in Haifa. The main reason for its arrival was the quality of the manpower, the engineers, their ability to solve problems in creative and original ways and, ultimately, to provide Intel with solutions that would be used by the company and are still being used to this day.” Fassberg said, “To date, Intel has invested USD 9.4 billion in Israel, while the Israeli government has invested USD 1.3 billion. This partnership has led to the situation today, with Intel’s most advanced technologies being produced in Kiryat Gat. A combination of awesome engineering capabilities, Israel’s high quality educational infrastructure, the number of Nobel Prize winners in relation to the population, the blend of educational capabilities and government investments – have made Israel highly attractive to international companies. These two things are intertwined – education and government support for investment.”