According to an exclusive article in Globes, written by Danny Zaken, the US has halted the Abraham Fund indefinitely, US and Israeli sources close to the matter stated.
The Abraham Fund was established with the signing of the Abraham Accords between Israel, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and the US in September 2020, and the signatories were expected to finance the fund alongside additional countries that would join later.
The announcement of the fund stated that “The Fund will realize the commitments in the Abraham Accords. The Fund will inject more than $3 billion into the development investment market in the private sector to promote economic cooperation and to encourage prosperity in the Middle East and beyond. The countries who are partners in establishing the fund will welcome other countries to join in order to promote its aims.”
In October 2020, the Abraham Fund began operations and, within three months, had reviewed hundreds of requests to support diverse businesses. More than ten initiatives in the domains of energy, food-tech, and fintech were also approved. The Abraham Fund also approached significant financial institutions in the US, asking them to join the campaign to boost the fund’s capital.
However, after Joe Biden was elected as the new US President, all efforts came to a halt. Rabbi Aryeh Lightstone, who had been selected by Donald Trump to lead the Abraham Fund, stepped down at the end of January, shortly after Biden’s inauguration. Lightstone’s position has not been replaced by the Biden administration since then.
Even though Trump signed the Abraham Accords, the Biden administration supports them, but it is less enthused about contributing funds to the Abraham Fund from its budget.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry contacted sources in Washington about the issue, and Washington informed Jerusalem that the Abraham Fund’s activities were being re-assessed.
According to reports, one of the reasons for the reassessment was the large investment that the Biden government will have to make in the economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
One of the reasons the UAE established a 10$ billion fund for investments in Israel, which was announced in March 2021, was because of this suspension. However, the fund has likewise failed to gain traction since.