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Good News From Israel No. 10 : Business, Science, Technology And More

In the 8th Dec 2013 edition of Israel’s good news:



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Unemployment falls to 5.9%.  Israel’s unemployment rate fell to 5.9% in October from 6% in September.  The number of Israelis participating in the work force rose to 3, 704, 000, up 0.4% from the previous month.


All-time record for currency reserves.  The total of Israel’s foreign currency reserves reached a new record of $80, 589 million in November.

Israeli economy gets more ‘A’s.  Fitch announced this that it has affirmed Israel’s ‘A’ rating and raised the country’s outlook to ‘positive’. It also affirmed Israel’s long-term foreign and local currency ratings at ‘A’ and ‘A+’ respectively. The agency also raised the outlook on the foreign currency debt from ‘stable’ to ‘positive’.

Apple buys Israel’s Prime Sense for $350 million.  After 18 months of talks, Apple Inc confirmed that it has acquired Israel’s PrimeSense. PrimeSense’s gesture recognition hardware and software is embedded in Microsoft’s Kinect system used in Xbox 360 game consoles.


Three of the fastest growing companies are Israeli.  Deloitte’s EMEA Fast 500 ranks three Israeli companies among the ten European technology companies with the highest rates of growth.  MyThings (advertising) was placed second, Trusteer (IT security) was fifth and MyHeritage (family trees and genealogy) was tenth.


Bedouin sheiks speak out.  Don’t believe the BBC or the incitement of non-Bedouin Arab politicians.  Watch this video and see what two Bedouin leaders think of Israel’s plan to improve the future of their brethren.


UN passes Israeli resolution on agriculture.  The UN on Tuesday passed an Israeli-sponsored resolution on “agricultural technology for development, ” a bill dedicated to sustainable agricultural advancements for developing countries.  138 countries voted “Yes” whilst Arab states abstained.


Eilat to be energy independent in 2 years.  An eight-megawatt medium-sized solar field has been installed at Kibbutz Neot Smadar – the second major solar site in the Eilat area.  Within 2 years, new sites will increase local capacity to 160MW, well above the current 120MW consumption level.


Geothermal power for Honduras.  Israel’s Ormat Industries is to build and operate the first-ever geothermal power plant in Honduras.  The 18-megawatt renewable energy plant will begin operations in 2016.


Building a power station for Peru.  Kallpa Generaction, a subsidiary of Israel Corporation, has been awarded the Peruvian government tender to build a 593MW dual-fuel open cycle power station (natural gas and diesel) that will support the country’s grid.  The agreement is for 20 years and is worth $1 billion.


Israel to restore Mexico’s aquifers. The Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of Mexico has signed a cooperation agreement with Israel’s national water carrier Mekorot for the development of strategies for the purification and protection of groundwater quality in Mexico.


SiSense wins World Technology Award.  Eldad Farkash of SiSense won a top prize at the World Technology Awards gala in New York City for his invention of In-Chip big data analytics technology. The Israeli-run company’s software allows users to analyze vast amounts of data at huge speeds using minimal hardware.


Preventing soil erosion.  Ben-Gurion University is establishing a center for excellence on fertile land erosion.  The project has been made possible due to a grant from the chief scientist of the Israeli Ministry of Agriculture.


Top Israeli companies at AgriVest.  Too new stars at Israel’s AgriVest agricultural conference included Rootility, which has a root-growing platform that substantially increases crop yields.  Also EggDetect, which ensures incubation of only fertile eggs and prevents unnecessary production of male chicks.




 Chemical stops brain from aging.  Researchers at the Hebrew university of Jerusalem and Israeli startup TyrNovo have discovered that a unique compound, named NT219, selectively inhibits the process of aging in order to protect the brain from neuro-degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s.


Regulating proteins in the brain.  In May, Tel Aviv University researchers discovered that too much of the “bad” protein Tomosyn led to Alzheimer’s disease in mice.  Now they have identified lists of microRNA molecules that regulate proteins that are either good or bad for brain performance.


Israeli fibroid treatment is now in use across the UK.  The ExAblate focused ultrasound (MRgFUS) from Israel’s Insightec is already in use in London, destroying uterine fibroids that cause pain and infertility.  MRgFUS has now been installed at Solihull’s Spire Parkway Hospital in the West Midlands of England.

Better calcium to treat osteoporosis.  Israeli biotech Amorphic has developed Amorphous Calcium Carbonate (ACC) that the body absorbs far better than the crystalline form.  Amorphic produced synthetic ACC after studying the crayfish, which uses natural ACC to build its bones in low calcium conditions.


New treatment for ADD.  Israeli start-up Alcobra set out to develop a pill that would reduce blood alcohol but came up with a treatment for Attention Deficit Disorder.  Alcobra claims metadoxine has all the benefits of Ritalin, Concerta, and Strattera without their drawbacks.


How Israel eradicated malaria.  The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is running a conference this coming week to analyze how Israel eliminated malaria from pre-State Palestine.  Lessons learned could help remove the scourge of malaria prevalent currently in Africa.


Israel and Syria:  Israel has been sending water and baby food to besieged Syrian villages.  The IDF has also been using its groundbreaking freeze-dried plasma innovation in its field hospitals – to save wounded Syrians from blood loss.


Still working in the Philippines.  Although the IDF mission has returned to Israel, the IsraAID delegation continues to provide relief to the typhoon victims in Ormoc and its surrounding municipalities.  The team is dealing with trauma and physical health problems, extending its role as other countries pull out.







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