Gov. Rick Scott will lead a group of nearly 70 Florida business leaders and educators on a trade mission to Israel beginning this weekend. It will be Scott’s second trip to Israel since becoming governor in 2011.
“Florida has proudly stood with our friend and ally Israel for many generations, and I am proud to be leading a delegation of Florida business and education leaders on a trade mission to Israel,” Scott said in a news release issued by his office Wednesday afternoon. “As we prepare for this important trade mission, it is clear that our entire nation must also continue to strengthen this partnership with Israel.”
In announcing the trip, Scott also reiterated his support for relocating the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
“I strongly believe that the U.S. Embassy belongs in Jerusalem and I am hopeful that a decision will be made to finally move the embassy to the its rightful destination in Israel’s capital city,” Scott said.
During his visit, Scott will conduct economic development meetings with Israeli leaders and business owners to encourage their investment in Florida’s economy. He also plans on signing multiple agreements with Israeli universities and economic development organizations to support continued partnerships and research opportunities.
The governor will also meet with officials of El Al, the Israeli airlines. The airline recently began direct flights from Miami to Tel Aviv, which is now one of only six direct flights offered by the airline to North America from Israel.
Scott will also pay tribute to the Florida-Israel Memorandum of Understanding Agreement between Space Florida and Israel. The agreement was established following Scott’s first visit to Israel six years ago and supports research, development, and aerospace and technology projects.
“Working with international partners like Israel is critical to strengthening Florida as a global destination for trade and to ensuring that our economy will continue to grow for years to come,” Scott added. “Our previous trade mission to Israel was an astonishing success, and I look forward to sharing how far Florida has come in just seven years. We have fought relentlessly to make Florida the best place for businesses to grow and families to find opportunity, and we must make sure we are doing all we can to share our state’s success story across the world.”