Israel and the UAE signed a free trade agreement in May, the first between an Arab state and Israel. Officials predict that trade will increase from $1.2 billion to $10 billion over the next five years as a result.
Officials from Israel and Bahrain said on Monday that they hoped to finalize a free trade deal before the end of the year.
Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) restored relations two years ago, with the U.S. acting as mediator. Economic links with the UAE have grown since then, but trade with Bahrain remains far behind.
Bahraini Minister of Industry and Commerce Zayed Alzayani said during a visit to a leading Israeli venture capital firm, Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP), that he was optimistic and hopeful that the deal would be closed by the end of the year.
Azzayani mentioned that another round of free trade negotiations was to take place in mid-November, in discussions with JVP founder Erel Margalit.
A Reuters report said that a delegation from Israel’s Economy Ministry would travel to Manama in order to finalize the negotiations as soon as possible, and hopefully by the end of the year.
Israel and the UAE signed a free trade agreement in May, the first between an Arab country and Israel. Officials believe that trade between the two nations will increase from $1.2 billion to $10 billion over the next five years as a result of the agreement.
Image Credit: Alexander Nemenov/Pool Photo via AP