The government approved Sunday a 50-percent raise in IDF soldiers’ salaries after months of discussions between the Defense and Finance ministries over the details of wage increases.
The pay hike is set to go into effect next month.
From January 2016, combat soldiers will see their monthly salaries rise from NIS 1,077 ($282.12) to NIS 1,616 ($423.30). Non-combat soldiers will receive NIS 1,176 ($308.05), compared to the NIS 784 ($205.37) they now receive.
Speaking at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said there was widespread support for the raises.
“I assume, and I am certain, that all ministers will praise the raising of the salary of IDF soldiers. It is necessary, right and correct,” he stated.
Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon said the decision “corrects a long-standing injustice,” but hinted he would look to raise salaries even further.
“The supplement is significant — approximately 50% in one go,” he said. “It is still not enough, but we are on the right track. The step we have taken is a significant one.”
In addition to raising soldiers’ salaries, the Finance Ministry proposal included NIS 600 million ($157 million) a year to be invested in improving the basic conditions of conscript soldiers.
While the move represents a 50% rise across the board, soldiers will still earn less than half the minimum wage.
In March 2015, following an earlier decision by the Knesset, the Histadrut labor union and business groups agreed to raise the minimum wage in the private sector to NIS 4,650. The minimum salary is to be raised again by NIS 175 within 18 months, and a year later by another NIS 175, reaching NIS 5,000 ($1,260) by December 2017.
The Times of Israel covers one of the most complicated, and contentious, parts of the world. Determined to keep readers fully informed and enable them to form and flesh out their own opinions, The Times of Israel has gradually established itself as the leading source of independent and fair-minded journalism on Israel, the region and the Jewish world.
We've achieved this by investing ever-greater resources in our journalism while keeping all of the content on our site free.
Unlike many other news sites, we have not put up a paywall. But we would like to invite readers who can afford to do so, and for whom The Times of Israel has become important, to help support our journalism by joining The Times of Israel Community. Join now and for as little as $6 a month you can both help ensure our ongoing investment in quality journalism, and enjoy special status and benefits as a Times of Israel Community member.