"Today we are excited to announce that Yandex has obtained permission from the Israeli Ministry of Transportation and Road Safety to operate its self-driving car on public roads [of Tel Aviv]. The car is now officially approved to operate in autonomous mode with a safety engineer in the driver’s seat," the statement read.
Israel is the third country where Yandex will be testing its autonomous vehicles after conducting relevant tests in Russia and the United States, according to the statement.
Commenting on the company's decision to choose Israel, Dmitry Polischuk, the head of Yandex Self-Driving Car project, said in the statement that the state was 'an obvious choice' as it was one of the first countries outside Russia where the company wanted to expand testing.
He stressed that Yandex was honored to be "one of the first companies in the country to receive a permit to operate self-driving vehicles."
Yandex started working on autonomous cars in 2016 and introduced its first prototype in May last year.