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Israel rejects $1.5B Chinese water plant after Pompeo said it could affect working relationship with US

May 27, 2020 | 🚀 Fathership
The Israeli government announced Tuesday that IDE Technologies has been awarded a $1.5 billion contract to build the world's largest desalination plant, beating out China-based CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd. - an announcement just weeks after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reportedly opposed Chinese involvement in Israeli infrastructure.

In an interview with Kan 11, a public broadcasting television channel, during his trip to Israel in mid-May, Pompeo said: "We do not want the Chinese Communist Party to have access to Israeli infrastructure, Israeli communication systems, all of the things that put Israeli citizens at risk and in turn put the capacity for America to work alongside Israel on important projects at risk, as well."

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU'S CORRUPTION TRIAL STARTS AS ISRAELI PM HITS BACK AT JUSTICE SYSTEM. IDE Technologies will build the desalination plant, known as Sorek 2, by 2023, which is expected to convert 200 million cubic meters of drinkable water annually, according to the South China Morning Post.

POMPEO ACCUSES IRAN OF ECHOING 'HITLER'S CALL FOR GENOCIDE' OVER 'FINAL SOLUTION' RHETORIC. Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz reportedly downplayed U.S. influence in Israel's decision in not granting the bid to CK Hutchinson Holdings, telling Kan 11 that "It didn't seem to me that this plant was at the forefront of American interests."

IDE Technologies will reportedly be 0.65 shekel - or about 19 cents - cheaper per cubic meter than current desalination strategies in Israel, according to The Jerusalem Post.