Israel, Egypt in new round of talks in U.S. to adjust QIZ deal

Egypt and Israel will hold Thursday a new round of talks in New York to adjust the Qualifying Industrial Zones (QIZ) treaty.

Ashraf Al Rabie, Head of the QIZ Division at the Egyptian Ministry of Trade, will hold a meeting Thursday with his Israeli counterpart on the sidelines of the textile fair Texworld in New York, Egyptian government sources told Amwal Al Ghad on Thursday.

Egypt seeks to reduce the required Israeli input in products exported under QIZ to 8 percent, from 10.5 percent as well as to include new industrial zones in Upper Egypt to the treaty, the sources added.

Signed in late 2004, the QIZ agreement granted Egyptian clothing manufacturers zero-tariff access to the US market as long as their products contained at least 10.5 percent Israeli input.

The textile fair in New York has witnessed a joint sales booth between Egyptian and Israeli representatives to draw the attention of American shopping malls and marketing firms to Egyptian goods, Israel Hayom newspaper reported Wednesday.

There are around 960 factories, located in Cairo, Alexandria, Suez, Delta, Minya, and Beni Suef, currently export goods to the U.S. duty-free, under the QIZ.

According to recent statistics from Egyptian Ministry of Trade, Egypt’s total exports of ready-made garments under the QIZ treaty recorded $556 million during the first five months of 2017.