Israeli Minister of Agriculture Yair Shamir announces new research fund following a meeting in Tokyo.
Israel and Japan will establish a joint research and development fund for agriculture. Israel’s Minister of Agriculture Yair Shamir and Japan’s Agriculture, Fisheries and Forests Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi said the new cooperation is the result of agricultural technology expertise in both countries. The two ministers also spoke about exporting more Israeli agricultural produce to Japan. “I was impressed that there is a great appreciation for the scientific and technological capabilities of the State of Israel in the field of agriculture,” Shamir said. “The Japanese government wants to increase the involvement of Israeli companies in the country’s fields of agriculture and water and I believe that this joint research and development fund is a most effective platform toward achieving this goal.” Three years ago, Israel established its first R&D fund with Italy and last year added similar research and development funds with Germany and China, totaling a sum of US$ 500,000 with each of these countries. Shamir and his Japanese counterpart spoke about fishing, cultivation in greenhouses, the use of treated wastewater and development of the dairy industry as being potential subjects for research in the Israel-Japan fund. Shamir traveled to Japan in order to promote the International Dairy Federation’s ‘World Dairy Summit’ which is to be held next year in Israel. The conference is the largest international professional event with more than 2,000 participants from 54 countries, and representing about 90 percent of the world’s dairy market.