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Ampal Announces $50 Million Israel Investments in Next Ten Years

Investments totaling $50,000,000 will be made in Israel in the next 10 years by AMPAL, the American Israeli Corporation, it was announced here today by Abraham Dickenstein, president of the AMPAL group. He made the announcement at a meeting of 1,500 of the group’s more than 40,000 American investors. Another major address at the meeting, detailing the vast economic strides made by Israel in the last decade, was made by Pinchas Sapir, Israel’s Minister of Commerce and Industry, who praised the investor’s group highly for being “among the first to help us financially.”

Mr. Dickenstein outlined a broad program of Israeli investments during the next decade, including the financing of industry, housing, shipping and agriculture. To raise the $50,000,000, he said, the AMPAL group would market common stock securities and convertible debentures or the Israel Development Corporation, totaling $10,000,000 plus several types of AMPAL debentures amounting to $15,000,000. Additionally, AMPAL will undertake several long-term financing projects in new housing construction in Israel, amounting to $15,000,000.

The AMPAL president also informed the investors, for the first time, about formation of Israel’s fund, a diversified investment company which will invest only in securities listed on the Tel Aviv stock exchange. He announced that the AMPAL group would undertake a real estate ownership venture in Israel and that it has acquired a large commercial building in the center of Tel Aviv, housing a supermarket.

AMPAL, which was established in 1942 with total assets of $99,000, has formed a number of additional subsidiaries and affiliates in the last 20 years, and now has total resources exceeding $71,000,000, Mr. Dickenstein said. Since the establishment of Israel in 1948, he said, the group has sold securities worth over $60,000,000, of which $40,000,000 was in debentures.

Mr. Sapir told the investors in his address that Israel’s financial position has changed so much that, now, Israel will not permit the acceptance of loans for a period shorter than 10 years. “We don’t need short-term loans,” he said, “and are stopping them to avoid inflation.” His office is now working on a new plan for the extension of industry, beyond the five-year plan drawn up in 1959. In spite of large, recent influxes of immigrants, he declared, Israel is now enjoying full employment. The Government, he declared, hopes to complete its Jordan River plan within the next 12 to 18 months.

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