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Cabinet Expected to Present $2.85 Billion Budget for New Fiscal Year

The Cabinet is expected to present a 10 billion pound ($2.85 billion) national budget to the Knesset for approval shortly. The budget was discussed at today’s Cabinet meeting.

Although no details were released, the new budget is estimated to be ten percent higher than the previous budget. The increase does not correspond to the increase in national income but is considered essential to meet Israel’s mounting needs. Another Cabinet meeting on the budget will be held to decide how to raise the necessary revenue. Nothing has been announced yet but increases in taxes and certain customs duties are expected.

Minister Without Portfolio Victor Shemtov said in a weekend radio broadcast that the burden on Israeli taxpayers would be increased IL 350 million ($100 million) this year in new taxes but he said the Government did not plan an economic slowdown or currency devaluation. He said the tax increases were intended as an anti-inflationary measure and to refill the state’s depleted treasury. He predicted that the Meir administration would take drastic economic measures during its first 100 days.

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