Canadian multinational company Bombardier Aerospace is considering buying equipment from nine Israeli companies as part of a "buyback program" in which it has to spend approximately EU78 million on Israeli products, the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor said on Tuesday.
As part of the deal to supply Israel Railways with rolling stock, Bombardier is obligated to spend around 35 percent of the revenue it receives on Israeli goods. The company has supplied 147 carriages for EU230m. and is due to provide 54 double-decker carriages. It spent EU27m. of the required amount by building them in Beersheba.
That leaves another EU51m. and last week one of Bombardier's senior purchasing managers took a tour of several Israeli companies, including Elbit and CMM. The manager said that there is "great potential" in Israel and that he intends to return soon with a large purchasing delegation, the ministry said.
Although Bombardier can spend the money in any sector, the ministry has persuaded it to use part of the budget on Israel's aerospace industry.
"We pressured the company to buy components from aerospace companies, as they didn't want to at first," said Zvi Zeshem, the director of Special Industrial Co-operation in the ministry.
Bombardier, which had revenues of $15.84 billion in 2004, is also involved in a consortium bidding to build the light railway in Tel Aviv. Other companies in the group include Germany's BVG and US firm Parsons Brinckerhoff.