PM Netanyahu and his Wife Welcomed at the Presidential Palace in Bogota by Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos



September 23, 2017

PM Netanyahu and his Wife Welcomed at the Presidential Palace in Bogota by Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Sara were, welcomed at the Presidential palace in Bogota by Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, last Wednesday, 13 September 2017, in a ceremony including an honor guard and the playing of the two countries’ national anthems.

Prime Minister Netanyahu and Colombian President Santos then met privately and were afterwards joined by the [Colombian] foreign, defense and agriculture ministers. Among the topics discussed were deepening bilateral cooperation in agricultural and water technologies, innovation and cyber defense. Prime Minister Netanyahu and Colombian President Santos agreed a Colombian cyber delegation would visit Israel for advanced training.

Prime Minister Netanyahu expressed Israel’s support for Colombia’s accession to the OECD.

Israel is a Pacific Alliance observer state. The Pacific Alliance member states are Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Chile, which combined constitute the eighth largest economy in the world. Israel intends to deepen economic cooperation with this major market.

The PM said that: “the future belongs to those who innovate. Israel is an innovation nation. Colombia has outstanding capabilities and people. We’d like to merge them together, so we have decided today on rekindling and refinancing an innovation fund, Columbia Israel Innovation Fund. Maybe you will teach finally how to make a good cup of coffee, but many, many other things I’m sure.”

The following bilateral agreements were signed:

1. An MOU on science: The MOU was signed between the Science, Technology and Space Ministry and its Colombian counterpart. Its goal is to promote joint scientific research. The MOU is pursuant to a 1962 framework agreement and will advance the exchange of knowledge as well as promote initiatives and entrepreneurs in the field of innovation. To this end, it provides for seminars, conferences and other events. The MOU will be implemented upon signing.

2. A tourism agreement: This is a bilateral framework agreement on tourism. Its goal is to advance tourism between Israel and Colombia, especially organized tourism. The sides will promote cooperation between various tourism organizations and aspire to develop cooperation in rural tourism, digital tourism and visits to national heritage and religious sites. The sides will also cooperate in various fields including a) exchanges of knowledge about projects and tourism research, and between travel experts and tourism ministries (statistics, tourism literature, etc.), b) promoting cooperation in private sector investments and c) strengthening bilateral cooperation at the World Tourism Organization. The agreement is subject to ratification.

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