Israel is seeking to strengthen industrial cooperation with Japan because economic stability will help push forward the Middle East peace process, Israeli Foreign Minister David Levy said in Tokyo on Feb. 28.

“On the road to peace, you have to invest,” Levy told a press conference at the Japan National Press Club. “A strong Israel is a safeguard for peace.” He said that since arriving in Japan, he has felt the Japanese government’s strong desire to step up cooperation with Israel in a number of fields, especially in industrial research and development.

Early Feb. 28, Levy met with Shoichiro Toyoda, chairman of the Japan Federation of Economic Organizations (Keidanren), to discuss bilateral business ties. According to Levy, Israel’s finance chief and trade and industry minister will visit Japan within two months, accompanied by a business delegation.

The Israeli minister cited such areas as advanced technology, medicine and computer software where bilateral business cooperation should be promoted. “I’m sure we can cooperate for the benefit of both sides,” Levy said. He also said that Israel and Japan are both willing to invest in projects involving the Palestinians. “That does not have to be simply for financial gains. We have to do so in order to help them,” Levy said.

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