Carmel market in Tel Aviv.
There were years when Israel was the world champion in agriculture, today we are the world champions in cost of living (Photo: ShutterStock)
Another reform of the previous government is canceled.
Lavala learned that the Minister of Agriculture and the farmers' organizations are currently working on a new reform in agriculture, instead of the reform that was one of the previous government's flagships and worked to lower tariffs on the import of fruits and vegetables, in order to lower the cost of living.
The new reform will be presented to the government on February 23, with the start of discussions on the state budget.
It turns out that it does not matter if it is a left, center or right government, the agricultural lobby will succeed in manipulating any elected government and prevent a significant reduction in the customs duty imposed on the import of agricultural products to Israel: the farmers' organizations included Shas, Torah Judaism, Otzma Yehudit and religious Zionism in the coalition agreements, The party of Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, a section that discusses the freezing of the reform in agriculture led by the former ministers, Agriculture Minister Oded Porer and Finance Minister Avigdor Lieberman.
In the section that referred to it, it was written: "The government will promote a new reform in the field of agriculture, while finding the right balance between reducing prices and strengthening Israeli agriculture. Until the formulation of a new outline as mentioned above, the reforms in agriculture formulated by the 36th government will be frozen, as long as they did not come into effect automatically."
The Minister of Finance, Bezalel Smotrich, who advocates opening the market to imports, insisted on maintaining the plan to lower tariffs in five steps, which the farmers signed, the second of which went into effect a month ago, but the farmers want to stop or change them as well.
Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich: Despite the statements, real reform in agriculture will no longer be on his watch (Photo: Avi Rokah)
"I had a meeting with the Minister of Finance," says
Dobi Amitai, chairman of the Farmers' Association
, "and he told me that the agreements should be respected, and he proved it when he raised the price of eggs.
He is the one who inserted the tariff reduction clause into the coalition agreements.
It is clear to Nu that lowering the tariffs is part of the minister's agenda, but I will convince him that everything that has been decided on should not be lowered.
"Smotrich, as the chairman of religious Zionism, signed the coalition agreement on the cancellation of the previous government's reform and the introduction of a new reform, which we are working on these days, which will be based on introducing a younger generation to agriculture, increasing production and agricultural output, and increasing the agricultural areas in the State of Israel.
"We are working in cooperation with the Minister of Agriculture, who will be the one to lead the new reform, which will provide an answer to food security, this is a way of lowering the cost of living and making sure that the lower deciles can enjoy healthy and decent agricultural produce. The Minister of Finance asked us to bring a long-term plan for agriculture. He hasn't seen it yet, but we hope he will confirm it."
More in Walla!
The leading health fund presents: the services that will make your life easier
In collaboration with Kalit
Dobi Amitai, Chairman of the Business Sector Presidency and Chairman of the Farmers' Association.
Great success for the agricultural lobby.
Is it also for consumers in Israel? (Photo: Reuven Castro)
Cost of living
A real bear