The free-trade agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates is set to be signed by the end of March, Emirati Ambassador to Israel Mohamed Al Khaja said in a Wednesday morning tweet.
Talks for establishing the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) began last November between Economy Minister Orna Barbivai and her Emirati counterpart Abdulla bin Touq Al Mari.
The deal will include "issues relating to trade in goods including regulation, customs, trade in services, government procurement, e-commerce and the preservation of intellectual property rights," Ohad Cohen, director of the Foreign Trade Administration who is leading Israel’s negotiators, said then.
CEPA will "serve as an accelerator for significant economic prosperity" between the two nations, the ambassador wrote.
לאחר ההסכמים עם הודו ואינדונזיה,איחוד האמירויות וישראל #UAE ו- #ISRAEL מתעתדות לקדם את סגירתו של הסכם השותפות הכלכלית המקיף 'CEPA' לקראת סוף החודש הקרוב.איחוד האמירויות מאמינה שהסכם 'CEPA' עם ישראל ישמש מאיץ לשגשוג כלכלי משמעותי.@misrad_calcala— Mohamed Al Khaja (@AmbAlKhaja) March 9, 2022
There has been a massive increase in trade between Israel and its Middle East neighbors, especially since the signing of the Abraham Accords, according to data from Israel's Central Bureau of Statistics and Foreign Ministry.
Trade has increased dramatically between Israel and the UAE since the signing of the accords. Worth about $125 million in 2020, that figure reached nearly $500 m. in 2021. Some have estimated that trade will exceed $1 billion this year and reach $3 b. within three years.
The Emirates has also recently signed a CEPA with India and is in advanced negotiations with Indonesia, with a deal likely to be completed soon following a positive round of talks in February.