Key members of the first Israeli technology delegation participating at the 40th Gitex Technology Week in Dubai spoke about the enthusiasm of doing business with the UAE and sharing knowledge in the areas of tourism, trade and homeland security, as well as addressing climate issues, water and food security and smart mobility.
The Israeli delegation to the UAE includes, among others, Adiv Baruch, chairman of the Israel Export Institute; Ruben Krupik, chairman of Bank Hapoalim; Dov Kotler, Bank Hapoalim CEO, David Leffler, director-general of the Ministry of Economy and Industry and Dr Anant Lea Bonshtien, chairman and director of the Fuel Choices and Smart Mobility Initiative at Israel Prime Minister's Office, as well as executives from different Israeli industries.
Speaking to Gulf News, David Leffler said, “There is a lot of excitement around the first Arab-Israeli peace deal. Unlike the peace treaty we have with Jordan and Egypt, where we have focused on peace, this accord is about businesses. People in Israel are curious about the UAE and tourists from our country have already started coming in with so many flights now operating.”
Leffler also spoke of plans of setting up the Embassy of Israel in Abu Dhabi and also a special economic mission in Dubai. “It’s very near,” he said. “We have spoken to the Dubai Chamber and they are very open about establishing the economic mission here in Dubai.”
With both countries sharing a desert landscape, Leffler said Israel has a lot of expertise in water management and dealing with water shortage. “We recycle and reuse almost 80 per cent of our sewage water for irrigation purposes and this is something that we can share with the UAE.” Other areas where Israel will be able to share its technology know-how is aggrotech, fintech and homeland security.
“There is a lot to learn from the UAE expertise in infrastructure and planning and their abilities to execute complex projects. The UAE has built smart communities, and while we have the technology related to smart cities, we have not implemented that yet. So the UAE can help us address that gap in the market,” said Leffler.
“We are very excited,” he said, “but it’s also important to identify what is the relative advantage on each side and not rush into things. There is a huge potential to do business together, and we are also looking at Dubai’s success with business set ups and how we can learn to cut the bureaucracy on our side. The good thing is that people of both countries are practical and business oriented, so we have the same mentality.”
Talking about smart mobility, Dr Anat Lea Bonshtien spoke about discussions with the RTA on using big data and Artificial Intelligence to predict the future of transportation, prevent accidents and traffic jams and usage of smart street lights. “We also plan to share knowledge on electric mobility and operation of autonomous vehicles. Both countries have very agile governments and we are looking forward to this knowledge sharing.”