500 businessmen, delegates of the International Christian Chamber of Commerce (ICCC) from 5 continents, together with Government Leaders of African states will arrive in Israel to participate in an International Business Congress "Approaching a New Era" that will take place in Jerusalem from 28th April until May 1st, 2008.

(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

The delegation numbering 500 businessmen and executives form all over the world, members of the International Christian Chamber of Commerce, will arrive in Israel within the next few days to participate in a unique international business congress, at the Inbal Hotel in Jerusalem from 28th April until May 1st, 2008. 

During the congress with the theme, "Approaching A New Era," Israel and Government Leaders of 4 African states, Rwanda, Burundi, Benin and Liberia, will sign a unique document to promote commercial and economic cooperation between these states.

Both the Congress and the cooperation between Israel and the 4 African states were initiated by the ICCC  leadership. The ICCC is a global network of entrepreneurs, business leaders and professionals serving with a base of Judaeo Christian values.  It was founded in 1985 and represents millions of Christian businessmen from 100 different nations. The International President of the ICCC is Dale W. Neill from Los Angeles and the Chairman and founder of the ICCC J.Gunnar Olson, from Sweden. In the past the ICCC initiated several International Business Congresses, in Washington D.C., Moscow, South Africa, Europe, Asia and Israel. 

The Federation of Israeli Chambers of Commerce (ICC), the Manufacturers’ Association of Israel (MAI), and the Israel Export & International Cooperation Institute (IEICI) took part in the organisation of the present Congress.

The delegations of the African states will include Ministers of Economic Affairs and other governement officials. 

On Wednesday April 30th there will be a Signing Ceremony, in which Eli Yishai, Deputy Prime Minsiter, Minister of Industry, Trade and Labor of Israel will participate, together with the African leaders. Each State will individually sign an Economic and Commercial Cooperation  Declaration with Israel.

The Congress will officially open on Tuesday, 29th of April, with the expected participation of the Israeli President Mr. Shimon Peres. The Congress will also be attended by the President of the Manufacturers Association of Israel,  Mr. Shraga Brosh, Representatives of the Israeli Government, and Israeli exporters and industrialists. 

The ICCC reports that in recent years these African States have been experiencing their strongest growth and lowest inflation in over 30 years. The GDP has averaged 5.4 percent growth annually over the past decade. The aim of the Congress is therefore to enhance the bonds of friendship and a spirit of cooperation among entrepreneurs, corporations, trade organizations and governements. 

ICCC President Dale Neill declared that the Congress and the signing of the agreements between Israel, Rwanda, Burundi, Benin and Liberia is an expression of our trust and confidence in the Israeli economy and its ability to help African countries that have been chosen because of the efforts demonstrated by the current administrations to establish ethical governance and a strong anticorruption policy. 

In the course of the Congress, over 400 individually pre-organized business meetings will be carried out in order to stimulate economic growth and to promote business and cooperation between Israeli businessmen,  the  African nations, and the Business Delegates attending the Congress.  Similar meetings in the past have produced  business gains of  $80 million USD. The meetings have been organized by Rachella Weinstock, Director of External Relations of the Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute and the ICCC.