Israeli Economy
New Gov't Passes Major Hurdle, Green Lights State Budget

After 3 years without a budget, the Israeli government approved the state budget for 2021-2022 in a significant political moment for the new coalition.

Following a 24-hour marathon of deliberations, the ministers agreed that this year’s budget will stand at NIS423.5 billion ($131.25 billion) with a deficit of 6.8 percent and next year the sum will rise to NIS452.5 billion ($140.24 billion) with a deficit of 3.9 percent.

The economic plan will now move to the Knesset (Israel Parliament) for final approval. In case the budget does not pass the parliamentary hurdle, the coalition will automatically dissolve.

The new budget includes a slew of reforms, among them a broad plan to open the market to imports (to lower the cost of living), raising the retirement age of women to 65, opening the agricultural field -- which stirred angst and protests from pressure groups -- optimizing the kosher array by opening it for competition, a plan to optimize regulations and the establishment of a new regulatory authority.

In addition, the government will promote the acceleration of the central metro project, increasing competition in banking, adopting public transportation fees, transferring more authority to school principals, removing obstacles on exporting cannabis, regulations in the fire extinguishing department, expanding green energy and more.

# Israeli Economy # Naftali Bennett # Israeli Politics
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