Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
October 26, 2012

Senior economic officials from the United States and Israel discussed macroeconomic trends and policy challenges as well as other key bilateral economic issues in an annual meeting of the U.S.-Israel Joint Economic Development Group (JEDG) October 24-25 at the U.S. Department of State. The two sides exchanged views on global, U.S., and Israeli economic policies and performance, agreed to expand cooperation on addressing cyber threats to economic and financial infrastructure and discussed the economic challenges and opportunities posed by Israel’s recent discoveries of significant off-shore gas reserves.

On October 24, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Tim Geithner and Israel Finance Ministry Director General Doron Cohen signed a Memorandum of Understanding establishing a new framework for administering the recently extended U.S.-Israel Loan Guarantee program, which is designed to help the Israeli government access financial resources from private capital markets at affordable rates, in order to promote the country’s economic growth and stability.

The Israeli delegation was led by Finance Ministry Director General Doron Cohen, with Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren, as well as officials from the Bank of Israel, National Cybersecurity Bureau, National Economic Council, and the Embassy of Israel in Washington, DC. The U.S. delegation was co-chaired by Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment, Robert Hormats, and Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for International Finance, Charles Collyns, and included U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro as well as officials from the National Security Staff, Departments of State, Treasury and Energy, and the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv.

The U.S.-Israel JEDG was established in 1984 as a bilateral mechanism to exchange views on economic policy and issues and serves as a mechanism to review the U.S. Loan Guarantee Program for Israel.

PRN: 2012/1716