Anti-Imperialism/Foreign Policy

China, Israel free-trade deal, Beijing’s first in Middle East, in ‘last stages’ amid troubles with US

  • After discussions dating back to 2016, a breakthrough trade deal between China and Israel may be signed this year, showing that Beijing can ‘talk to both sides’
  • Deal could potentially open the door to greater access to Middle Eastern agricultural technology as parts of China have been devastated by drought and heatwaves

China and Israel aim to sign a free-trade agreement by the end of 2022, an Israeli official said on Wednesday, in a breakthrough that would give Beijing its first deal in the Middle East plus a boost after years of trade friction with Australia and the United States.

Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao and Orna Barbivay, the Israeli minister of economy and industry, raised hopes in a chat earlier this year of signing their agreement within 2022, Amir Lati, Consul General of Israel in Hong Kong, told the Post.

The two sides have held trade talks online since the start of the pandemic to follow up on discussions that began in 2016, the consulate representative said.

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