The Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute (IEICI) has expressed deep concern about the drop in high-tech exports.
The Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute reported US$3.7 billion in high-tech exports in the first half of 2013, 8% less than in the first half of 2012 - the lowest figure in three years.
The IEICI's data indicate that, avionics, electronic components, and pharmaceuticals, rose by 5.5% in dollar terms, to US$10.3 billion. This growth, according to the data, was mostly due to large exporters, including Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. and Intel Israel Ltd., and deliveries of equipment by defense industries under previous contracts.
High-tech exports began falling in the fourth quarter of 2011, and the slide continued through 2012, with a 3.3% drop.
Export Institute chairman Ramzi Gabbay noted that "The data are worrying, and indicate a decline in the export capabilities of Israeli high tech," he noted that "The decline is clear, and is due to the ongoing drop in market demand, reduced global trade, and the weakness of the US dollar."
Despite the weakness of high-tech exports, the IEICI reports US$23.7 billion in total exports in the first half of 2013, 4.5% higher than in the first half of 2012. IEICI attributes the export growth to higher exports of pharmaceuticals, electronic components, and chemicals, which more than offset lower exports by other high-tech sectors.