25 Years Of Bilateral Trade
There has been a steady rise in bilateral trade and economic relations every since diplomatic relations between India and Israel were established in 1992. From USD 200 million in 1992 (comprising primarily of diamonds), merchandise trade diversified and reached USD 4.16 billion (excluding defence) in 2016
COOPERATION IN AGRICULTURE AND WATER TECHNOLOGIES
Agriculture: Under a comprehensive Work Planfor cooperation in agriculture signed on 10 May 2006, bilateral projects are implemented through MASHAV (Center for International Cooperation of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs) and CINADCO (Centre for International Agricultural Development Cooperation of Israel’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development). Agricultural cooperation was formalized through three year work plans.
The Action Plan for 2012-2015 expanded cooperation to various States in India. Under this Action Plan, Israel agreed to set up 26 Centers of Excellence across 9 States. These Centers demonstrate an integrated and scientific approach to farming.
These Centers were spread across different fields - in Maharashtra, Centers of Excellence was set-up for Mango at Ratnagiri; Citrus at Akola; and Pomegranate at Rahuri. A Center of Excellence for vegetables was set up in Karnal, Haryana. In Sirsa, Punjab the Center for fruits was established. 15 such Centers have already been commissioned. Third phase of agricultural work plan (2015-18) was signed in September, 2015. Under this plan, cooperation will be expanded into 6 more States.
Indian officials receive training in Israel from time to time. Indian official and business delegations regularly attend Israel’s triennial international agricultural exhibition event Agritech, which showcases Israel’s achievements in agriculture. In Agritech 2015, India’s participation included the Chief Ministers from Maharashtra and Meghalaya and official delegations from Telangana, Mizoram and Punjab.
MASHAV, Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation, is active in India with many experimental and demonstration projects. MASHAV operates an agricultural demonstration farm in Pusa and regularly runs courses on developing small and medium sized businesses in rural areas. Naan Dan Jain Irrigation and Netafim have won major agricultural projects in India.
Water: Ongoing cooperation between the two countries in the sector was formalized through a MOU on Water Resources Management and Development Cooperation which was signed in November 2016. India’s companies and official delegations regularly visit the biannual event WATEC in Israel which showcases Israel’s water and energy technologies.