Teams from Israel and UAE may grow strawberries and blueberries in desert

Arieli Capital, an investment firm that operates innovation centers in Israel and around the world, and a regional council in the Negev desert in Israel, says it is in talks with officials in the United Arab Emirates to promote desert agriculture projects; UAE teams may visit Israel’s Negev to get ag-tech know-how.

Discussions began before Israel and the UAE announced a normalization agreement between the two counties on August 16, the parties said in a statement on Tuesday.

The talks have been taking place with UAE representatives who contacted the parties in Israel. Several meetings on the subject have taken place in Europe with Eran Doron, head of the Ramat Negev Regional Council, and representatives from the Center for Experimental Desert Agriculture in Ramat Negev.

“Technology and innovation will become the bridge that connects the Israeli and UAE ecosystems and communities,” said Eric Bentov, a partner at Arieli Capital. “The discussions are a game changing opportunity to unlock the social and economic potential of the Middle Eastern countries.”

As part of the negotiations, UAE officials are considering sending teams to the Ramat Negev region to undergo training in innovative desert agriculture to help grow crops including strawberries, blueberries and tomatoes, so as to cut back on imports, said Or Haviv, a partner at Arieli Capital, in the statement. 

Read more at Times of Israel.

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