Almogi Warns Recession May Hamper Absorption of Olim

A warning that an economic recession might hamper the absorption of new immigrants and therefore discourage immigration was voiced by Haifa Mayor Joseph Almogi. Speaking at the Haifa Maritime and Economic Club, Friday, Almogi warned that the government must prevent an economic recession in view of the increased immigration anticipated from the Soviet Union.

Almogi, former Minister of Labor, said he is optimistic about increased Soviet aliya because of the compromise reportedly reached last Thursday between President Ford and Sen. Henry M. Jackson (D. Wash.) and other key senators on the Jackson Amendment. “If Russia receives the ‘most favored nation status,’ a larger and steadier stream of immigrants from that country could be expected,” Almogi said. “A recession at this time would seriously hamper the absorption of these immigrants.”

But Labor Minister Moshe Baram, interviewed on Israel Radio Friday night, said there was no foundation for the fears of a recession because of the recent cuts in government building. He said while the construction of public buildings is being curtailed, there will be not let-up on constructions of apartments for immigrants and young couples and in slum-clearing programs.

EFFORTS TO AID NEW IMMIGRANTS

Meanwhile, the government is trying to deal with the problem of lack of jobs for new immigrants who are college graduates. Some 2,000 new immigrant professionals are unemployed. After negotiations between the Absorption and Labor Ministries and the army, some 450 of these new immigrants will be employed as civilian workers in the defense establishment. They will undergo special training and will be working within a year.

Another 100 will get jobs at the giant Israel paper mills in Hadera. Thirty-five economists and statisticians will be employed by the Department of Statistics, 100 engineers will get jobs in the Israel Aircraft Industry, and some 300 physicians and medical staffers will form the bulk of the staff of the Hadassah Medical Center which is being reopened on Mount Scopus.

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