Change of Command at El Al
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Change of Command at El Al

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Abraham Shavit, a prominent industrialist and president of the Israel Manufacturers Association; took up his new post today as chairman of EI AI, Israel’s national airline, in a new attempt to put the troubled carrier on a sound economic footing. He replaced Mordechai Ben Art, a leading civil aviation figure, who has been associated with EI AI for 29 years.

Ben Ari resigned several days ago at the urging of the new Finance Minister, Yigal Hurwitz and the Minister of Energy and Communications, Yitzhak Modai, who felt that a new personality must take the helm if the airline is to be restored to solvency. Shavit said today that while EI AI cannot become the world’s largest airline, it could become one of the best. He promised to make every possible effort to achieve that goal.

EI AI, which has had to contend with repeated labor strife in recent years, is now embarked on a major economy program that will reduce its employment rolls by one quarter. This is expected to save $25 million a year, which is the amount EI AI expects to lose from this year’s operations. The airline suffered severe losses last year as well.

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