Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people. Proverbs 14:34 (The Israel Bible™)
Uncertainty still swirls around the United Kingdom and the issue of Brexit; will it happen or won’t it? And if it does happen what form will it take? Well, the first moves toward a British exit from the European Union coincided with the announcement that a trade deal has “in principle” been agreed with Israel.
Britain’s International Development Secretary Liam Fox, a key cabinet supporter of Brexit, made the announcement on Wednesday afternoon alongside Israel’s Economy Minister Eli Cohen.
Mark Regev, Israel’s Ambassador to the United Kingdom was understandably delighted with the agreement, tweeting it was more “excellent news for the rapidly-growing UK-Israel partnership.
More excellent news for the rapidly growing Israel-UK partnership, last year alone worth £7bn in trade. https://t.co/hMNS0qLCSc
— Mark Regev (@MarkRegev) January 23, 2019
Fox and Cohen’s joint announcement came at Davos, Switzerland, host of the World Economic Forum.
“I’m delighted that as Britain prepares to leave the European Union, and to ensure continuity for our businesses in both directions, we’ve reached agreement in principle today with our colleagues in Israel,” said Fox.
“Israel has been one of the most cooperative and productive partners in this relationship, where our trade is already strong and set to go further,” he maintained, adding that it was a “precursor to an even more ambitious agreement in the future.”
BREAKING News from @Davos: 🇬🇧 and 🇮🇱 have agreed in principle a UK-Israel agreement. Here is the video of Eli Cohen (Israel’s Minister of the Economy) and I making the announcement at @wef. @netanyahu #FreeTradeIsGREAT #FreeTrade #WEF2019 #wef #wef19 pic.twitter.com/odbZtWr4Uo
— Dr Liam Fox MP (@LiamFox) January 23, 2019
In response, Cohen predicted that the in-principle agreement would “accelerate, increase and strengthen our economic relationship,” with a UK-Israel trade and investment conference scheduled for London in the coming months.
Fox made it clear that he would like to sign trade agreements with other trading partners outside of the European Union.