Smotrich to oversee civilian, economic issues during war

Carrie Keller-Lynn is a former political and legal correspondent for The Times of Israel

Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich attends the first meeting of the committee for decentralization and increasing competition in the food and toiletry markets, September 3, 2023. (Chaim Goldberg/Flash90)
Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich attends the first meeting of the committee for decentralization and increasing competition in the food and toiletry markets, September 3, 2023. (Chaim Goldberg/Flash90)

The government has expanded its socio-economic powers, enabling it to manage the “entire civilian system for the war,” according to a statement from the Finance Ministry.

Based on a government decision, a committee is now authorized to discuss war-related civilian issues, including, but not limited to, the economic impact on private companies and the public sector, rehabilitating Gaza border communities, and ensuring continued functionality of civilian services.

Originally created in June to tackle Israel’s soaring cost of living and chaired by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the Ministerial Committee for Social and Economic Affairs will now fall under Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich.

In addition, ministers Gideon Sa’ar, Chili Tropper, Yoav Kisch, Uriel Buso and Yaakov Margi are added to the committee, and minister Yifat Shasha-Biton will be an observer.

The new powers are valid until the end of the war.

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