Published On: Tue, Nov 8th, 2016

Chinese Firm Seeks to Buy Israeli Hotel Chain, Report

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Israel-China Netanyahu with Wang Xiaotao,   deputy chief of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) / official

 

“Globes” website reports that hotel chains from China are interested in buying hotels in Israel. The names of chains under possible consideration have not been disclosed.

In 2015, as many as 45, 000 Chinese tourists visited Israel, while by August 2016, over 50, 000 have so far come this year, with many more planning to visit by the end of the year. Government of Israel tourism officials had expected 100, 000 Chinese tourists to visit Israel in 2017, but that number appears to be conservative now, they said.

The investment interest comes after a Chinese delegation arrived in Israel last week, with more than 200 government officials and business executives, led by Wang Xiaotao, Vice Chairman of the country’s National Development and Reform Commission, or NDRC.

During the visit over 15 agreements on joint projects were signed between Israeli and Chinese companies.

Among those deals is one to build a new soccer stadium in Bat Yam, a project to be undertaken by China Machinery Engineering.

A major agricultural research agreement was signed as well, with Israeli companies participating in the establishment of a new biotech, agritech and health research center to be built in the Chinese city of Chengdou.

Trade between China and Israel in 2015 crossed the threshold of $11 billion, of which approximately $3.5 billion by way of Israeli exports. Recently there has been a significant increase in Chinese investment in Israel in the fields of industry, infrastructure and hi-tech. Eli Groner, head of the Prime Minister’s Office, said that those numbers show the “important development of Israel’s opening to the East. The Chinese believe that we have unbeatable technology and agricultural capabilities, and they come here to learn from us. For us, this is a golden opportunity to open up the Chinese market to Israeli entrepreneurs and firms.”

The Chinese market, inter alia, increasing the marketing budget of the Ministry of Tourism, the encouragement of Israeli tour guides to learn Chinese, encouraging hotels to adapt to the requirements of the Chinese market, the Chinese-language signage placing key sites and removing obstacles to Chinese tourism in Israel.
Israeli venture capital funds with participating Chinese investors raised $750 million in 2015 compared with $500 million in 2014. In 2015, Chinese investors invested $467 million in Israeli startups, compared with $302 million in 2014.

About 30% of all investments in high tech companies in 2015 originated in China. In tourism last year there occurred substantial increases in the number of Chinese tourists arriving in Israel. Starting soon, in mid-November will begin the establishment of ten-year visas for travel between the two countries.

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