Russian Prime Minister in Israel to boost trade

Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev (R) seen with Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Uri Ariel during his visit at the Volcani Institute in Rishon Lezion, Central Israel, November 10, 2016. (Photo: Flash90)

Hours after Americans elected Republican Donald Trump as their 45th president, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev arrived in Israel to strengthen trade ties between the two countries.

“My goal as the chairman of the Russian government is to stimulate trade – something that would bring benefits to Israeli and Russian businesses likewise,” Medvedev told Israel’s Channel 2 earlier this week, Russia behind the Headlines reported.

The Russian prime minister hopes to boost trade ties, which have slowed down by about 30 percent, in part because of the devaluation of the ruble along with a global economic slowdown, according to Medvedev.

“Israel has splendid agrarian technologies and there’s much to learn from it in the field,” Medvedev said. “Russian and Israeli agrarian centers and universities have special relations.”

Medvedev will tour the Volcani Center for Agricultural Research with Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Uri Ariel Wednesday afternoon, where he’ll learn about new developments, including research that’s made milk production on Israeli dairy farms among the highest in the world.

Russia is also interested in bilateral cooperation with the Israeli high-tech industry.

“Our two sides can reach a very fair level of trade relations,” he said. “I’m not even mentioning here the large energy and gas projects we’re considering at present.”

An official statement from the Kremlin cited the “special nature” of the ties between the two countries and the more than one million former Russians who immigrated to Israel.

“Over a million of our compatriots, our countrymen from the former Soviet Union have settled [in Israel],” Mevedev said.

On Friday, Jerusalem Affairs Minister Zeev Elkin will accompany Medvedev on a tour of the Yad VaShem Holocaust Museum, where he’ll visit the children’s memorial and lay a wreath in the Hall of Remembrance.

Afterward he will visit Palestinian Authority-controlled Jericho before heading home in the late afternoon.

This article originally appeared on CBN News, November 10, 2016, and reposted with permission.