Commerce Department Official Predicts U.S. Exports to Israel Will Set Record in 1970

A Department of Commerce official has predicted that U.S. exports to Israel are likely to set a new record in 1970 topping the half-billion dollar mark for the first time, According to John P. Edwards, of the Near East-South Asia division of the Department’s Bureau of International Commerce, factors accounting for the rise in U.S. sales to Israel Include “sustained growth of Israel’s gross national product, coupled with relative wage and price stability (and) a very large increase in defense purchases.” Mr. Edwards assessed the U.S.-Israel trade picture In an article in the current issue of “International Commerce,” a weekly publication of the Department of Commerce. In a separate article, he noted that U.S. exports to Lebanon will reach $65 million in 1970, some $25 million less than last year’s level. Last year, U.S. sales to Israel totalled $457 million, up from $200 million in 1966, a year of recession for Israel. “The Israeli GNP rose by 12 percent In real terms in 1969 to $4.7 billion and it is anticipated that the growth rate will be nine percent during the current year–bringing the GNP for 1970 to about $5.1 billion,” Mr. Edwards wrote. “The sectors especially responsible for this growth are building–expected to rise by as much as 25 percent–and industry, which will probably expand by roughly 13 percent.”

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