JERUSALEM (May. 15)
Israelis face record unemployment, much higher taxes and a lower level of consumption under a five-year economic stabilization plan now being completed by the Treasury for the period 1975-79. The newspaper Yediot Achronot which disclosed the existence of the plan in an exclusive story today, said the Treasury envisioned the next two years as “critical years” for Israel’s economy with a record 120,000 people out of work.
The measures called for, according to the five year plan, include an increased rate of taxation up to 42 percent of the gross national product, compared to 28 percent at present, the newspaper said. The Israel Pound, which was devalued last year, will be subject to an immediate further devaluation by 15 percent to be followed by repeated changes in the foreign currency exchange rate to adapt to changes on the world market.
Yediot Achronot said the plan also envisaged a reduction of capital imports, a reduced rate of economic growth and a radical decrease in private consumption which will be frozen for a period of five years. According to the paper, the plan will be discussed thoroughly soon after Finance Minister Yehoshua Rabinowitz returns from his current visit to the U.S. (Rabinowitz left the U.S. yesterday and was due back in Israel today.)