JERUSALEM (Jun. 13)
Commerce and Industry Minister Pinhas Sapir declared here today that despite the current rebuff in Brussels of Israel’s attempts to achieve a comprehensive trade agreement with the six-nation European Common Market, “we will not cease our efforts to arrive at such an agreement. Our case is both valid and just.”
Despite the setback in the Israel-European Economic Community negotiations in Brussels, which have been underway for the past ten days, the Minister said he was optimistic about export prospects. He said that trade missions would leave soon for South America and Australia.
He stressed the necessity for cutting production costs on Israel’s products by 15 to 20 percent to aid Israel’s export trade. He also disclosed that his Ministry was preparing the outline of a second five year forecast of industrial development, covering the years 1966 to 1970. He added that the forecast would be based on projections that the Israel population would touch the 3,000,000 mark sometime in that period.