Members of the workers' committee at the Israel Electric Company said, Friday, that they were willing to open negotiations immediately on reforms in the industry that could lead to 2,000 job cuts. In an interview published, Thursday, by the Yisrael Hayom daily, Water and Energy Minister Silvan Shalom said he was seeking such reforms.
Industry sources expressed cautious optimism. One of them told the newspaper, "It's clear that the time has come to start reform. The thing that is most encouraging is that Minister Shalom is giving a boost to the parties to get it underway. At the same time, this reform has been stalled for so many years that I have learned not to raise my expectations." He added, "The headlines coming out of the Shalom interview represent the prevailing winds blowing in regulation rooms."