Diamond Industry Financing Leader ABN AMRO Bank is on its way to ISRAEL

ISRAEL Diamond Exchange President Avi Paz, right, with ABN AMRO BANK President Victor van der Kwast

The CEO of ABN AMRO Bank International and Diamond Jewelry Group (ID & JG), and Senior Executives, visited Israel in order to evaluate the possibility of opening a branch in Israel. 
Israel Diamond Exchange President Avi Paz, who initiated the effort to bring the bank to Israel, said "the addition of a bank of the size of ABN AMRO to the arena of financing the Israeli Diamond Industry would be a significant positive development and can be expected to lead to a profound-increase in the financing of the industry.

During their stay in Israel, the bank executives, together with Israel Diamond Exchange president and its managing director, Yair Cohen, met with the Supervisor of Banks of the Bank of Israel, David Zaken, who was supportive to a new niche entry should ABN AMRO Bank decide to pursue an Israeli presence.
For many years the Israeli diamond industry has tried to attract major international banks to Israel, in order to expand the scope of credit extended to the industry, which is considered Israel’s number one export industry. 
Israel Diamond Exchange Managing Director Yair Cohen said "currently, the credit to the Israeli-diamond industry totals approximately 1.7 billion dollars and our immediate target is to increase this to a level of 3 billion dollars.
In an effort to improve the financing of the Israeli Diamond Industry, IDE President Avi Paz, who is also President of the World Federation-of Diamond Bourses, met several times with executives of the Dutch bank, in order to present-them with information on the strength and the growth potential of the Israeli Diamond Industry.
ABN AMRO is the leading bank in the world diamond industry, accounting for approximately 25% of the total-financing of the industry worldwide.

Victor van der Kwast, CEO of ID & JG, said during his visit to Israel that ABN AMRO footprint lacks an Israeli presence and that Israel is clearly-one of the oldest and key diamond centers in the global arena.  He also pointed out that he is grateful to the-IDE President Avi Paz for his initiative and efforts in inviting them to Israel and for introducing them to the Supervisor of Banks.
Israel Diamond Exchange President Avi Paz said "bringing ABN AMRO’s International Diamond & Jewelry Group to Israel-would be one of the most important and significant-economic measures in recent years for the diamond industry. The entry of a bank of this size could lead to a very significant positive change in the field of credit to the industry.
Israel Diamond Exchange President Avi Paz went on to add, "ABN AMRO is the leading financer in the world diamond industry. It is a bank that knows the industry well and knows how to work with those involved. The bank-understands the tremendous growth potential of the Israeli diamond industry and I am convinced that both they and we-would benefit from their starting activities in the Israel Diamond Exchange. We will continue our efforts to promote this.
Supervisor of Banks David Zaken said that he welcomes the possible entry of ABN AMRO to Israel and considers it an indication of the strength of-the Israel economy and of the Israel Diamond Industry in particular.
Diamond Exchange Managing Director Yair Cohen added that "the addition of ABN AMRO to the six banks that-currently finance the Israeli industry would strengthen the industry, enhance its financing abilities, and help it expand-activities.

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