The Boycott Mirage – Efraim Inbar
So far, the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign waged by Israel’s enemies has not achieved much success. With the exception of isolated cases, Israeli exports are well received all over the world, particularly if they are competitive in quality and price.
Israel has found ways to penetrate important markets and Israeli products are imported even by Arab states. Moreover, some Israeli-made products have unique qualities which make them indispensable. Israeli high-tech components have become part of the standard equipment of many global brands. Most Israeli businessmen hardly meet obstacles that are connected to political animosity toward Israel.
The U.S. is the number one export country for Israel. Attempts to boycott Israeli products are unlikely to be successful in America, where public support for Israel has remained stable for the past two decades at over 60%.
Several Western European states, prime recipients of Israel’s exports, are indeed displaying a growing anti-Israel bias, despite good bilateral relations. As the euro crisis lingers, the purchasing power of European countries is in decline. Even in Europe there are strong pockets of pro-Israeli sentiments.
Israeli exports are gradually being redirected to Asian markets. The Asians are business-like and do not carry anti-Semitic historical baggage. Israel is generally viewed in Asia as a successful country and a model to be emulated. Prof. Efraim Inbar is director of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies at Bar-Ilan University. (Israel Hayom)