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UK-Israel trade increased after Brexit vote

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The British Embassy in Tel Aviv published figures for the first time that reveal the number of Israeli companies active in the UK has increased since the Brexit vote last year.

From June 2016 to May 2017, 32 new Israeli companies entered the UK market. They invested £152m and created 888 new jobs. This is an increase on the previous year where 25 Israeli companies entered Britain with an investment of £114m and created 787 jobs.

Barry Grossman, Commercial Attaché of the British Embassy in Israel, told The Marker: “Companies continue to set up businesses in the UK, and even more than in the past.  People have understood that the referendum created more opportunities, and I think Britain will put more emphasis on developing its trade in the world.”

He added: “We want to reach a free trade agreement between Israel and Britain as soon as possible.”

The Embassy data shows that the 32 Israeli companies that established themselves in the UK last year represent a diverse group; eight dealt with financial services and seven with software, with others working in advertising, infrastructure, trade, engineering, space, tourism and technology.

Grossman said the Israeli companies receive financial incentives such as tax benefits, and municipal benefits where local authorities want to create jobs and easy access to finance and consumers.

The data does not represent the full extent of Israeli investment in Britain because it excludes £150 million in infrastructure and renewal projects invested by Israeli financial institutions in the last year.

In other news, the Royal Air Force and Israel Defence Forces completed three days of joint exercises to test sea rescue capabilities in stormy conditions,  the largest joint exercise between the two countries in a decade.