BONN (Dec. 30)
Several Arab governments have protested officially and unofficially to the Bonn government over tax concessions that favor West German business investments in Israel, it was learned here today. German capital invested in Israel is estimated at well over $100 million, mainly in industrial growth, hotels, tourist ventures and public transportation.
Investors in Israeli projects enjoy tax write-offs of up to 80 percent under West German financial laws which treat as “privileged” investments in “developing countries.” Diplomatic sources here revealed that the governments of Jordan. Algeria, Lebanon and Tunisia have demanded similar tax privileges for investments in their countries or, alternatively, the “removal of preferential treatment” for investments in Israel. The investments in Israel are usually made through brokerage houses one of which has reportedly transferred over $25 million to Israel during the past year.
The Westdeutsch Immobilienfonds Treuband, a major investment firm in Cologne, is offering the public a $20,000 tax deduction for every $2,200 they invest in Israel. The firm acts in coordination with the Israel Corporation Ltd. managed by Baron Edmund De Rothschild. German investment brokers prefer to handle their Israeli transactions without fanfare for fear that Arab pressure might lead the government to shut off this source of profitable investments. So far there have been no negative reactions from government authorities.