Egypt negotiates with Israel to reinstate 68 companies under QIZ
A seamstress cuts fabric with a laser cutting machine in a factory of Egypt's QIZ - Reuters

CAIRO: The Trade Ministry is negotiating with Israel to not permanently remove 68 Egyptian companies from a list operating per the Qualifying Industrial Zones agreement (QIZ,) an official source at the ministry told Youm7 Thursday.

Israel froze the said companies’ status in the QIZ last year, giving them a grace period until Dec. 30, after it discovered they forged invoices of products made in Israel; a condition to operate under the QIZ.

Israel informed Egypt that the Egyptian companies agreed with an Israeli company to forge the invoices. For their part, the companies agreed to purchase Israeli input and produce new invoices.

The QIZ of Egypt is planning to enroll 18 food industry companies in list of corporations working per the economic agreement between Egypt, Jordan, Israel and the U.S, the source said, adding that there are 150 garments factories in Egypt that benefit from the QIZ.

Egypt joined the QIZ in 2005 after positive results were brought about in Jordan since it applied the QIZ in 1998.

The agreement provides designated geographic areas within Egypt, such as Cairo, Alexandria and Suez, with a duty free status with the U.S. as long as they contain Israeli components.

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