Benjamin Netanyahu has reacted to the UK’s decision to leave the European Union saying that the UK and Israel have laid a strong foundation for continued cooperation and that Britain’s decision to leave the EU will not directly impact Israel.
Prime Minister Netanyahu issued a statement Monday following the announcement that David Cameron is to stand stand as Prime Minister in October:
“I have great appreciation for Prime Minister David Cameron, a respected leader and a true friend of Israel and the Jewish people.
“Throughout his premiership, the security, economic and technological cooperation between the United Kingdom and Israel has greatly expanded.
“Together we laid a strong foundation for continued cooperation.”
Meanwhile on Sunday, Netanyahu said that there will be no direct impact on Israel’s economy from Britain’s decision to leave the European Union.
“There is no direct impact on Israel, except for the fact that we are part of the global economy,” Netanyahu said at Sunday’s cabinet meeting, noting he met with his finance minister and the central bank chief.
“Israel’s economy is strong, it has very considerable foreign exchange reserves, therefore, to the extent there is some effect, it is not expected to be strong, other than the unrest in the global economy.”
Britain is Israel’s second-largest trading partner by country after the United States, and Europe is Israel’s largest trading partner.
Key share indexes declined 3.1 percent in Tel Aviv on Sunday, Israel’s first day trading since Britain voted to leave the EU, but this was minor compared to the sharp falls seen on Friday in global stock markets, which lost about $2 trillion in value.
Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon said Israel’s economy was strong, pointing to a 4.8 percent jobless rate and what he said was one of the lowest budget deficits among developed countries.
But he said the ministry and Bank of Israel had set up a “situation room” to monitor developments around Brexit 24 hours a day.
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