I propose to take Questions Nos. 147 and 148 together.
IDA Ireland do not intend to set up an office in Israel.
A request for tender for a part-time Israel based Business Development Consultant was issued on 26 April 2021. The Business Development Consultant will be expected to identify Israeli-headquartered companies with potential for investing in Ireland.
IDA Ireland has not yet awarded the Tender for a Part-time Consultant in Israel. As this procurement competition is ongoing, the IDA is not able to release the estimated view on the budget for this part-time Consultant.
Ireland’s position on the illegality of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territory informs our engagement with the State of Israel across a range of bilateral issues, including trade, and will continue to do so.
Ireland consistently raises human rights issues in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory at the highest international levels, including most recently at the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
As an Agency of my Department, I expect IDA Ireland to act in line with Government policy and the Agency has assured me that this is the case. IDA Ireland respects obligations under Irish and International law. Ireland remains steadfast in its support for a comprehensive two state solution which protects the future of both the Palestinian and Israeli peoples.
IDA Ireland has advised my Department that it will be guided by all aspects of the recently published Guidance for Business Enterprises by my colleague, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, when appointing a business development consultant in any territory.