Barlev Sees Israel and Territories As Becoming Free Market Area

Israel’s Minister of Commerce and Industry, Haim Barlev said today that he envisioned a free market area between Israel and the administered Arab, territories where goods will flow without customs barriers, even if, after peace is achieved, they are on opposite sides of an international frontier.

Addressing a press conference here, Barlev stressed that Israel and the territories are by now economically linked together. He said the flow of goods from Israel to the administered territories amounted to IL 570 million last year and to IL 157 million in the opposite direction. The Arab zone exported IL 57 million worth of goods through Israeli ports and IL 121 million worth to the neighboring Arab states via the Jordan River bridges.

Barlev said wages between Israel and the administered territories should be equalized. Arabs working in Israel are paid according to the Israeli wage scale. Barlev has proposed in the Cabinet that Jewish firms operating in the territories pay Israeli wages.

Israelis will be able to listen and watch around-the-clock election campaign propaganda in the month before the Knesset polls open to the public. Allotment of radio and TV time for the various parties was decided yesterday by a committee headed by Justice Haim Cohn.

There will be no News Bulletin Sept. 3, Labor Day.

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