Jerusalem: Acknowledging India`s growing
status as a regional economic power, Israel`s President Shimon
Peres has asked New Delhi to use its strength in solving the
problem of poverty in the Middle East.
Israeli President also asked India to "help the Arab
states in addressing their developmental challenges", sources
Peres also offered Israel`s help in this regard as
he felt "it is good for Israel too".
Commenting on the emerging global scenario, the elder
statesman said that the world currently faces a "deficit
of leadership" and that "there is too much money and too
The Israeli leader made these comments during recently
concluded fourth India-Israel forum where he was the
guest of honour.
Sam Pitroda, Adviser to the Prime Minister of
India on Public Infrastructure, Information and Innovation
proposed setting up a "knowledge city" in India with Israel`s
help at the forum.
Pitroda suggested that the follow up meeting of the forum
include a setting up of domain-expert groups in five sectors
agriculture, water, health, energy and hi-tech.
He also proposed exchange of corporate executive,
professors and students.
Highlighting the impressive growth registered in
bilateral trade between India and Israel, the adviser to
India`s Prime Minister suggested that the forum focus on
cooperation in hi-tech sector and critical areas, including
water conservation, renewables and agriculture.
Israel`s Minister of Finance, Yuval Steinitz, also
addressed the forum underlining the need to conclude the
ongoing negotiations on Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the
With cooperation in the field of homeland security
between the two countries tightening following the Mumbai
terror attacks, Israel`s Minister for Homeland Security, Matan
Vilnai, also addressed the forum noting counter-terrorism
challenges faced by both countries.