Minimum Wage to be Raised to 5,000 Shekels

Histadrut head and Manufacturers' Association president agree to gradual raise of 700 shekels completing in January 2017.

Uzi Baruch, Ari Yashar ,

Nati Shohat/Flash 90

Histadrut labor union chair Avi Nissenkorn and Israel Manufacturers' Association President Tzvika Oren decided on Wednesday morning to raise the minimum wage by 700 shekels up to the monthly figure of 5,000 shekels (just over $1,200).

The two agreed that starting on January 1, minimum wage will be raised from 4,300 shekels to 5,000 shekels in gradual steps implemented over three stages ending in January 2017.

At 10 a.m. the Manufacturers' Association leadership met to pass the agreements, with a signature on them expected later in the day.

Governor of the Bank of Israel, Karnit Flug, on Tuesday announced her support of the wage raise, saying "what we are talking about is correcting the distortions that presently exist within the economy and wage settings. It can be an effective tool to limit and reduce poverty."

The Histadrut declared a general work conflict in the economy two weeks ago so as to raise the wages.

"We need to make a meaningful change and raise the working man above the poverty threshold. The minimum wage needs to rise to 5,300 shekels," Nissenkorn said. "I don't see anyone among the government ministers or MKs willing to live one month on 4,300 shekels."

The threat of a general strike is anticipated to be removed following the agreement between Nissenkorn and Oren.