NEW YORK (Nov. 13)
Returning from a week of top-level discussions with Prime Minister Eshkol and Finance Minister Sapir on Israel’s economic situation, Dr. Joseph J. Schwartz, vice-president of the Israel Bond Organization, reported today that Israel was in urgent need of more Israel Bond funds to meet economic problems that were aggravated by the June war. “The short duration of the hostilities limited the setbacks and disruptions of the economy,” Dr. Schwartz said, “but Israel has not yet caught up with the tremendous drain on her resources brought on by the critical developments of last spring.”
However, Dr. Schwartz expressed optimism on the problem of unemployment, pointing out that he was greatly encouraged by the reduction in the number of jobless that resulted from an upswing in industrial production and an increase in public works projects financed with the aid of Israel Bond funds. “Israel has turned the corner on the crucial problem of unemployment,” he said.
“But it still has a long way to go in creating more jobs for its growing labor force. The drive to return the country to full employment depends to a great extent on the expansion of production for export and that, in turn, depends on the availability of large-scale resources to establish new industries to increase Israel’s foreign trade.”
Dr. Schwartz reported that both Prime Minister Eshkol and Finance Minister Sapir urged that the Israel Bond Organization exert every effort to maintain in the balance of the current year, and in 1968, the extraordinary level of Israel Bond sales that were recorded during last summer’s emergency.