Israel-UAE free trade deal takes force as customs agreement inked in Jerusalem


Netanyahu says pact will boost business between nations, ‘bring down the cost of living’; 96% of traded products to be exempt from customs

With the bilateral diplomatic relationship coming under strain, UAE-Israel economic ties took an important step forward on Sunday, as the two side signed the final, and most important, component of a free trade agreement.

The customs pact was signed by Foreign Minister Eli Cohen and UAE Ambassador Mohamed al-Khaja in Jerusalem, with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in attendance.

The Israel-UAE Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement was signed in Dubai last May, but could not go into force until the two countries signed the customs agreement Sunday.