A National Plan for the Chemical Industry in Israel

The National Plan for the Chemical Industry in Israel is a large project that the S. Neaman Institute has been leading since 2004. The project analyzes past and present chemical and pharmaceutical activities in Israel, presents alternatives and proposes new industry branches in this field. This project compares these industries with other global markets and suggests policy tools for Israeli decision makers. The basic assumption was that despite its significant potential, this industry sector faces a number of limitations which may prevent it from reaching an optimal contribution to the market. The proposed plan is intended to overcome these obstacles and enable the industry to reach its full potential, with the associated contribution to the national economy.

The S. Neaman Institute has collaborated in this project with the Israeli Finance Ministry and the Israeli Manufacturers Association. A final paper was submitted to major decision-makers in the Israeli government, industry and financial markets; it was also presented in December 2007 at Israel Business Conference in Tel Aviv.

During 2005 the four sub-committees ("Chemistry Education", chaired by Prof. Judith Dori; "New Technological Directions", chaired by Prof. Yoel Sasson; "Infrastructure and Green Industry", chaired by Prof. Yoram Avnimelech; and "National Policy", chaired by Mr. Ohad Orenstein and Mr. Reuven Vax) completed the process of data collection and analysis of the various findings and began writing the first draft of the final paper. After a brainstorming process and study discussions, by early March 2006 the first draft of the final paper was completed and submitted to Dr. Gilead Fortuna, the Chair of the steering committee. The steering committee also decided that the paper would integrate the input from chemistry industry leaders. The steering committee eventually approved the comprehensive final paper which was submitted to the Israeli Government and other decision makers.

Generally, the committee's work summarizes 4 major subjects:

  • Improving chemistry education and teaching at all age levels, and upgrading the educational investment.
  • Creating a basic solution to the mixture of environmental and industrial infrastructure.
  • Making the chemical industry an active partner in absorbing new technologies listed by the Chief Scientist and supported by the government.
  • Implementing all above-mentioned subjects within the framework of national policy.
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