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Israel, Turkey Joint Declaration on the Construction and Management of the Erez Industrial Zone

The Foreign Ministers of Israel and Turkey met today at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Jerusalem to discuss possible arrangements between their two countries in connection with the construction and management of the industrial zone formally known as “Erez” Industrial Zone, by a Turkish management company. At the conclusion of their discussions they have agreed on a set of principles attached herewith. The two ministers wish to notify their understandings and declare as follows:

The Government of Israel and the Government of the Republic of Turkey wish to contribute to the economic development and prosperity of the Palestinian population in the Gaza Strip.

In this context they welcome the Turkish commitment to reinforce its assistance in promoting prosperity and stability in the region. The two sides also welcomed the “Ankara Forum for Economic Cooperation” as a dialogue and coordination mechanism between Israeli, Turkish and the Palestinian businessmen.

They also expressed their appreciation for the initiative of the Manufacturers Association of Israel and the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) to convene a dialogue intended to assist in the revitalization of the Palestinian economy, and the “Erez” Industrial Zone in particular, through the “Ankara Forum for Economic Cooperation”.

Both sides expressed their high value and welcome for the Turkish experience and know-how concerning the establishment of industrial parks as well as the adaptation of global best practices for their management.

The two sides took note that Israel and the PLO have signed an Interim Agreement and subsequent agreements and arrangements that govern their relations.

The parties agreed that practical arrangements for the facilitation of the operation of the “Erez” Industrial Zone, including the usage of the Israeli maritime ports for exports and imports to and from the “Erez” Industrial Zone, would be coordinated between the two sides taking into account the agreed principles attached herewith.

Signed in Jerusalem, 5 of Tevet 5766 which equals to January 5th 2006

H.E. Silvan Shalom

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the State of Israel

H E. Abdullah Gul

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey

Ministry of Foreign Affairs