Oil health and beauty products.
(photo credit: ING IMAGE/ASAP)
One of the flagship industries of the West Bank, Ahava Dead Sea Laboratories, is considering relocating its factory at Kibbutz Mitzpe Shalem to an area within the Green Line.
Motzi Dahaman, the head of the Megilot Regional Council to which Kibbutz Mitzpe Shalem belongs, charged that the plan is a response to pressure from the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, and vowed to fight the relocation plan.
“We’ll ask the government to help us,” Dahaman said, adding that relocating the factory, which employs 75 people, will not stop anti-Israel groups from targeting the company, which uses Dead Sea minerals to produce its products.
“The whole idea is bullshit,” he said, claiming the company will still be boycotted because this is a fight against Israel and not against the settlement.
Kibbutzim over the Green Line own 45 percent of the company, he added.
Globes, which first reported the possibility of the Ahava relocation, published the following statement from the company in response.
“Due to expanding production needs and changes in regulations for manufacturing cosmetic products in certain Western countries, Ahava is examining the option of setting up another factory. One of the possibilities is the Tamar Regional Council. Other alternatives are being investigated. No decision has yet been taken to open the additional plant.”
Last year, SodaStream, the maker of a consumer home carbonation machine, decided to relocate its main production facility from the nearby West Bank industrial park of Mishor Adumim to the Negev.
Telecommunications giant Orange SA sparked fears of increased boycott activity against Israel when its CEO Stephane Richard spoke last week of ending the company’s relationship with Partner Communications. He has since walked back those comments, saying Orange will remain in Israel.