Israel set to reopen economic office in Turkey

Israel set to reopen economic office in Turkey
Update: 05 July 2022 17:45
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Economy Minister Orna Barbivai said Israel will reopen its economic and trade office in Turkey. Diplomatic relations between the two countries have been frozen since 2018.

Israel will reopen its economic and trade office in Turkey, amid efforts to restore bilateral ties, Reuters reported, citing Israeli Economy and Industry Minister Orna Barbivai on Tuesday.

"The reopening of the economic attache reflects Israel's commitment to deepening economic ties with Turkey," Barbivai said.

Relations between Turkey and Israel have been fractured over a string of issues for more than a decade. Since 2018, they did not exchange ambassadors, following the unrest in Gaza during the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem. 

Israeli Foreign Minister Yiar Lapid paid a visit to Turkey last month, meeting with his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu, amid the ongoing efforts of mending bilateral ties. 

The two countries agreed to start working to raise their diplomatic relations to the ambassadors level, Cavusoglu said during a joint press conference with Lapid, according to Artı Gercek news website.

"We intend to soon promote a joint economic conference between the countries, after more than a decade," Barbivai said.

The initiative will help more than 1,500 Israeli companies that are currently exporting to Turkey, Reuters said, citing Israeli ministry.

Trade between Turkey and Israel continued despite the frozen diplomatic ties, and Turkey is one of Israel’s most important partners in the field, according to Reuters. Bilateral trade increased by 30 percent last year, reaching $7.7 billion, it said.