Feb 02, 2017 - 8:30am

A New Strategy for Economic Partnership with Israel


Senior Director, Turkey and Middle East Affairs
Executive Director, Middle East Commercial Center
Today, I wrote an op-ed for The Observer on why "The US and Israel Must Grow Their Economic Alliance Under Trump":
Given President Trump’s sharp focus on both creating U.S. jobs and bolstering U.S. support for Israel, we have a significant opportunity to grow the commercial and economic alliance between our two countries. Historically, this aspect of the bilateral relationship is overshadowed by our security alliance. However, the U.S.-Israel commercial relationship supports thousands of jobs in both nations, and bilateral commerce drives game-changing innovation benefiting both economies.
 
Yet, we have only scratched the surface in realizing the potential of what our economies can accomplish together. The Trump Administration can seize on that opportunity and forge a new strategic economic partnership with Israel.  
 
Both the White House and the Prime Minister’s office can direct their governments to establish a new mechanism to address a range of bilateral economic, trade, and competitive issues, such as a High-Level Economic Dialogue.
 
Unlike many other trading partners, the two governments lack a permanent, high-level body charged with taking a holistic policy approach to key economic issues.  As a result, the multiple and loosely coordinated efforts by the U.S. and Israeli governments today make it difficult to realize the full potential, especially for complex challenges.
 
A High-Level Economic Dialogue could consist of an annual meeting led by senior officials at the White House, Office of the Prime Minister, and other agencies and ministries to focus on issues such as regulatory cooperation, trade relations, and innovation policy.  By raising the level of bilateral economic cooperation, this Dialogue would broaden the scope of consultations and could help drive greater accountability among both governments.  In conjunction with the Dialogue, leading U.S. and Israeli business associations could organize an annual business conference that could provide a structure and direct opportunity for business to provide input and advice to the government on key economic issues.
 
Furthermore, Israel contributes to a range of critical sectors in the U.S. economy which can be amplified and expanded through a meaningful dialogue and engagement with the private sector, including cyber, water, advanced manufacturing, and infrastructure.
You can read the entire piece in The Observer.

About the Author

About the Author

Josh Kram photo
Senior Director, Turkey and Middle East Affairs
Executive Director, Middle East Commercial Center

Joshua M. Kram is senior director for Middle East Affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, where he oversees programs and policy initiatives to broaden commercial relationships between the United States and markets in the Middle East.