Finance minister: Economy strong despite ‘huge forces’ trying to stir overhaul panic

Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich at a press conference in Jerusalem on August 9, 2023. (Chaim Goldberg/Flash90)
Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich at a press conference in Jerusalem on August 9, 2023. (Chaim Goldberg/Flash90)

Submitting an economic report to the Knesset, Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich says, “Israel’s economic data is strong and thank God, the Israeli economy is strong and stable within the global sea of instability amid the international economic crisis.”

He says “growth is high and the job market is sound.” While he also says the rate of inflation and the state of the national interest rate are better than in most countries, he admits that “it is not as good as we expected when we submitted the state budget” and could remain high going forward.

Smotrich also attacks the national protest movement against the government’s efforts to overhaul the judicial system, saying the resilience of the local economy “is doubly clear in light of the campaign waged in recent months by irresponsible figures, who are trying to intentionally harm the economy as part of their political fight against the right-wing government and the important changes it wishes to pass in the Israeli judicial system.”

He goes on: “Huge forces with gargantuan budgets and unprecedented media backing are slandering Israel throughout the economic world with bold lies and false scaremongering, doing everything they can to create panic and negative economic sentiment.

“So far it seems their influence on the economy is minuscule.”

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