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Consulate has Israel on map in S. China
By Liang Qiwen and Li Wenfang (China Daily)
Updated: 2009-07-03 07:13

GUANGZHOU: The head of the newly launched Israeli consulate general in Guangzhou hopes Israel's presence there will strengthen ties between his country and South China.

Avraham Nir told China Daily there is great scope to work together on computer and mobile phone technology, clean energy, water recycling and agriculture.

Israel's consulate general in Guangzhou started operating in March. It is the third such facility in China after Shanghai and Hong Kong.

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The Guangzhou consulate covers the provinces of Guangdong, Hainan and Fujian, and the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region.

Israel is advanced in hi-tech industries and innovation. Guangdong province, which is China's economic powerhouse, is increasingly developing a hi-tech and clean economy focus, which suggests opportunities for cooperation, Nir said.

He added that computer mobile phone technology used widely around the world was invented in Israel.

Israel was named the world's most efficient recycled water user in a United Nations report, he said. The country purifies and reuses almost 70 percent of its waste water, outranking the second most efficient recycled water user - Spain - which recycles 12 percent.

Israel is also advanced in dairy farming and solar technology, he said.

Trade between Israel and Guangdong stood at $1.3 billion in 2007, accounting for one quarter of all trade between China and Israel.

Despite the economic downturn, trade between Israel and Guangdong increased this year, he added.

About 1,000 Israeli people live in South China, mostly in Guangdong, Nir said. The consulate plans to start issuing visas next month.