Economic Impact

Israel plans upgraded Gulf trade route to Europe through Haifa port - report

July 07, 2023

An Israeli Foreign Ministry reveals 'a regional land connectivity project' between the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Israel

It was revealed Friday that Jerusalem and Washington are promoting an upgraded trade route between the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Israel, which will connect the Gulf directly to Europe through an Israeli seaport, according to Ynet.

"The Abraham Accords changed the political reality in our region and opened a path for new modes of transportation,” an Israeli Foreign Ministry document stated, shown exclusively to Ynet.

“A regional land connectivity project between the Gulf states and Israel - a game changer that will upgrade global trade in the Middle East - improve Israel's position as a center for transporting goods from the Far East to the Western world and will highlight the role of the U.S. in the region,” it stated.

“The Land Connectivity by Trucks project will provide an easy solution to improve land trade, and will be a platform for all partners - the USA, the Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Jordan, as well as other interested countries in the region, such as Bahrain and Oman.” 

The plan was touted as significantly reducing transportation costs and shortening the time for moving cargo. According to Ynet, Israeli and American officials estimated it would cut travel time from several weeks to two or three days and save up to 20-percent in costs.

Current methods included trucks arriving from the UAE at the Haifa Port, but having to go through lengthy and complicated bureaucratic procedures, or to ship through the expensive Suez Canal. The proposed upgrade would streamline the Gulf route to Europe, through Israel.

Israeli officials told Ynet that the plan could be advanced relatively quickly, before a normalization between Israel and Saudi Arabia, due to the benefits for all parties. A new route for tourism was also suggested, though at a later stage.

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