Israel and Turkey are upgrading their agricultural and food trade agreement, which will enable an increase in the export of food from Israel to Turkey to US$20m a year, according to a statement by Israel’s Ministry of Industry and Trade.

This is the first time that the two countries have upgraded their free trade agreement signed in 1997. Deputy premier and finance minister Ehud Olmert said that the benefits provided by Turkey in the improved pact will boost the export of food and fresh produce to Turkey, such as tax-free quotas for dried fruits, coffee, tomato powder, herbs, and juice bases.

In return, Israel will grant Turkey tax-free quotas for exporting to Israel nuts, dried fruits, jams, and beer. The two countries also agreed to change the terms of the pact to adjust it to the Pan-European requirements for specifying the point of origin, which will enable Israeli entrepreneurs to conduct business partnerships with Turkish companies for customs-free export to EU member countries, including the benefits associated with the trade in food and fresh produce.