Arizona opens up to more Israel-based businesses through Bureau of International Trade

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November marked two years since Arizona opened its trade and investment office in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey opened the office under the Arizona Commerce Authority in 2019 as a platform for businesses from both countries to increase international trade and foreign direct investment opportunities.

In 2019 alone, Arizona and Israel carried out more than $ 747 million in bilateral trade, according to Sandra Watson, president and CEO of the Arizona Commerce Authority.

“With more than 450 multinational companies present in Israel, it is only natural that the State of Arizona establishes a dedicated presence to strengthen our economic and commercial collaboration,” she said.

Since opening, the office has been in contact with more than 55 Israeli companies to consider establishing their US operations in Arizona, Watson said. Last year, the Arizona Israel office established a memorandum of understanding between the city of Yuma and Israel’s Ramat Negev region to cooperate in desert agriculture and other related technologies.

The office also led to the creation of the first Alumni Chapter in Israel for Arizona State University, helping to increase Arizona’s visibility in Israel.

“Israel and Arizona have a lot of similarities,” Watson said. For example, both have similar gross domestic products, population sizes, and climates; and focus on similar sectors such as aerospace and defense, agriculture and water conservation technologies, digital health, biotechnology and others.

“Both states are on a clear path of innovation and modernization of their markets. Israel is nicknamed the “start-up nation” and Arizona is often called a “start-up state” for a reason, ”she said.

Israel’s tech sector raised an unprecedented $ 25 billion in 2021, according to a report from Start-Up Nation Central, an Israeli non-profit organization. In cybersecurity alone, Israel has attracted 40% of total investment this year when it represents just 0.1% of the world’s population, according to Eviatar Matania, founding president and former chief executive of Israel’s National Cyber ​​Security Directorate . He recently wrote “Cybermania: How Israel Became a World Power in an Arena Shaping the Future of Mankind” with Amir Rapaport.

In Arizona, a 2019 Arizona Tech Council report found that the state’s tech sector is growing 40 percent faster than the United States as a whole. Investments topped $ 979.5 million in the first three quarters of 2021, according to PitchBook and the National Venture Capital Association.

Hillel Newman, Consul General of Israel in the U.S. Southwest Pacific, has visited Arizona several times since taking office in July 2019.

There’s a lot going on between Israel and Arizona, Newman told Jewish News.

Several Israeli-owned companies have already established operations in Arizona, including digital health company IMNA Solutions, prop-tech company Stoa, agrotechnology and hydraulics company N-Drip, mobility company NoTraffic and CP Technologies.

He hinted that more Israeli companies are on their way to Arizona.

“I can’t give names of companies – I can just say there is a lot of interest,” he said. Arizona is “on the map” for Israeli businesses looking to relocate.

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