PARIS (Nov. 8)
The First European Conference for Israel’s Development closed here tonight after adopting the goal of selling $50,000,000 in Israel Bonds throughout Western Europe.
The 80 delegates from seven European countries, many of them non-Jewish financial leaders, unanimously approved a resolution to create a permanent European committee for Israel’s development. Each national delegation promised to make a maximum effort to sell the bonds and to promote other forms of investment in Israel. The West German delegation pledged the sale in the near future of $5,000,000 in bonds. Other countries represented were France, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherlands and Britain.
Baron Edmond de Rothschild, president of the French Israel Bond organization, expressed the opinion that a goal of $50,000,000 in bond sales annually was feasible.
David Horwitz, Governor of the Bank of Israel, told the Conference the objective for Israel was rapid economic growth to reinforce its competitive capacity and integrate it closely with the free world economy.
The largely non-Jewish character of the conference and its goals represented an unprecedented action to help Israel build its own economy while continuing to assist newly independent African countries. Emile Roche, chairman of the French Government’s Economic and Social Council, presided. He expressed his wholehearted support for Israel, and lauded Franco-Israelities. He pledged himself to assist Israeli exports to France, and to help Israel’s investment plans.
Baron de Rothschild described Israel as “a turning platform between Europe and Africa” and as “the only country in the world where a free and a state economy co-exist side by side.” He said this latter fact could serve as an example to a world now torn by conflicting ideologies and added “for us, investment in Israel is a paying business and also our Marshall Plan in reverse.”