Unanimous agreement to raise disabled allowance

Government and opposition parties have jointly agreed to the raising of the allowance for disabled Israelis from the current NIS 2,500 to NIS 4,000 in three stages.  Housing assistance will also be raised, from NIS 770 to NIS 1,000.

Connecting tourists to tour guides

Dani Gadayev, co-founder and CEO of Israeli start-up TopGuides, describes the company’s online platform to connect tourists with tour guides, eliminating the need to pay commission to an agency.  

Bringing Israeli startups to China

Israel’s Bank Leumi and Ping An, China’s largest insurance group, agreed to promote and integrate Israeli hi-tech companies into the Chinese market.  The agreement was signed as part of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s visit to China.

Frutarom expands into Vietnam

Israeli flavors and fine ingredients company Frutarom has purchased a majority stake in Vietnamese company Western Flavors Fragrances Production (WFF). Frutarom intends to build a modern new flavors plant in Ho Chi Minh City and to expand its activity in Vietnam and the region.

Innovating diamond technology

The Ramat Gan Diamond Exchange has applied to establish a technology innovation center, to be called Diamond Tech. Its aim is to nurture Israeli and foreign startups in the early stages of the development of technology to be used primarily in the diamond sector.

Beit Shemesh to double in size

The city of Beit Shemesh is expected to double in size in the coming years. Approval has been given for 17,000 new apartments plus 530 dunams of land for businesses, companies, and hotels. In addition, the city will construct infrastructure and improve the city's parks and public transportation.

Israel to join World bond index

Israeli Government bonds will be even more highly desirable shortly, when Israeli bonds are included in the Citigroup World Government Bond Index (WGBI). Financial institutions will then be required to buy Israeli bonds to track the WGBI for their customers.

The first Israeli single-malt

Israel’s Milk & Honey Distillery (M&H) unveiled Israel’s first-ever single-malt whisky on World Whisky Day (May 20). 391 bottles will be sold in select Israeli stores in late June, after aging 3 years in special oak casks . Note that Israel’s Golan Heights distillery already produces Golani Two-grain whiskey.

Porsche to invest in Israeli auto-tech

German carmaker Porsche, owned by Volkswagen, has announced that it would invest tens of millions of euros in smart car technologies startups in Israel. Porsche said, “Israel is a key main market for IT engineers and specialists.”

Direct flights from Shanghai to Tel Aviv

Chinese airline Hainan Airlines has requested to begin direct flights between Shanghai and Ben Gurion Airport. Hainan is seeking to begin three weekly direct Shanghai flights from September 12 using Boeing 787s and Airbus 330s.