Israel’s Export of Citrus Fruit-increasing; Must Meet Stiff Competition

Israel’s exports of citrus fruit–the country’s principal export item–is constantly increasing, according to Moshe Levine, head of the Israel Citrus Marketing Board in Europe. Citrus exports to West Germany alone this year rose by 29 percent, as against last year’s figure. Overall, Israel is exporting abroad 10 per cent more of citrus fruits by comparison with 1959, Mr. Levine stated.

Despite these increases, however, Mr. Levine declared that Israel’s income from citrus sales is on the decline and is likely to go lower, due to stiff competition from other Mediterranean countries and due also to the customs agreement among the countries belonging to the European Common Market. These countries are France, West Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland and Italy.

Undeterred by this stiff competition, Mr. Levine said, Israel is already planning to step up next year’s citrus exports. A special mission will come here soon, he said, to negotiate for the shipment and marketing of next year’s product.

At the same time, it was reported here today that Israel exports to Britain during the first two months of 1960 were more than double in value compared with imports from Britain in that period. For the two months Israel exports to Britain reached an all-time peak of 5,300,000 pounds sterling while Britain exported to Israel products valued at 2,600,000 pounds sterling.

The comparable figures for the same two months in 1959 were 5,200,000 sterling pounds worth of imports from Israel and 1,900,000 sterling pounds worth of exports to Israel. The largest single commodity exported by Israel to Britain was citrus fruit. However, other Israel products, including textiles, are being exported to Britain in increasing volume.

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