TEL AVIV, ISRAEL--(Marketwired - May 2, 2013) - The Honourable Joe Oliver, Canada's Minister of Natural Resources, today concluded his successful economic mission to Israel, where he met with top government officials and industry leaders to strengthen investment, innovation and partnerships with Canada in the natural resource sectors.
"Canada and Israel have a rich history of cooperation in the energy sector and in the areas of science and technology," said Minister Oliver. "Canada's role as a global energy supplier and continued interest in energy cooperation with Israel highlight the important relationship between the two countries."
During his visit, Minister Oliver addressed energy industry leaders at a luncheon speech, where he announced the call for research and development proposals under the Canada-Israel Energy Science and Technology Fund (CIESTF). This Fund focuses on energy co-operation that will strengthen ties and increase bilateral relations on offshore energy development, unconventional sources of oil and gas, and renewable energy.
Minister Oliver participated in several roundtables with business leaders and oil and gas industry executives. He also met with Canadian students studying abroad at the Heseg House and took part in the dedication of Canada House, a community and cultural centre located in Jerusalem.
"Our relationship goes beyond government-to-government or business-to-business - it's person-to-person," said Minister Oliver. "More than 20,000 Canadians live in Israel. And Canada boasts a Jewish population of over 315,000. Sixteen years ago, we complemented the bonds of friendship with the connections of commerce when we signed a Free Trade Agreement - the first such agreement for Canada outside of our hemisphere."
Highlights of the Minister's economic mission included meeting with:
- Minister Silvan Shalom, Israeli Minister of Regional Development, Energy and Water, to discuss energy issues of mutual interest between Canada and Israel, and advance Canadian interests by discussing potential collaboration with Israel on offshore natural gas, unconventional oil and gas, and science and technology;
- Minister Naftali Bennett, Israeli Minister of Economics and Trade, to discuss trade and investment opportunities and promote and advance Canadian interests related to the Canada-Israel Energy Science and Technology Fund;
- Minister Amir Peretz, Israeli Minister of Environmental Protection, to promote Canada's Responsible Resource Development and discuss lessons learned in policy implementation;
- Minister Uzi Landau, Minister of Tourism, to build on previous meetings with Minister Landau in 2012; and
- Chief Scientist Avi Hasson, Ministry of Economics and Trade, to discuss the call for research and development proposals under the Canada-Israel Energy Science and Technology Fund (CIESTF).
The Minister's visit supports the Government of Canada's priority to increase market opportunities for the export of Canadian natural resource expertise to create jobs, growth and long-term prosperity.
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