Economics Minister Naftali Bennett with the I
Economics Minister Naftali Bennett with the ICourtesy of the Ministry of Economy

Intel will spend $6 billion to upgrade its Kiryat Gat chip manufacturing plant, in one of the biggest single investments ever by a foreign company in Israel. In exchange for the investment, the government will provide Intel with grants and tax breaks over the next ten years. The deal is expected to generate thousands of jobs.

Under the deal, Intel will get a grant of $300 million over a five year period, and be eligible for a significant reduction in corporate tax rates over a ten year period. Intel will guarantee to hire at least 1,000 workers, and to spend hundreds of millions of shekels on products and services in Israel. In addition, Israeli contractors and workers will get priority on the upgrade work. At least half of the thousand workers will be residents of Kiryat Malachi or points south, the government announcement said.

Intel is by far the largest international firm operating in Israel. Over the past 40 years, the company has invested over $10 billion in in Israel, and employs some 10,000 people directly. According to a company official, about 30,000 Israelis are employed in companies that do business with Intel.

Intel hasn't commented on the announcement, but the speculation is that the company plans to upgrade its Kiryat Gat facility to manufacture the next generation of its computer chips.

Commenting on the announcement, Finance Minister Yair Lapid said that "Intel's investment is a strategic asset for Israel's industry. This is the biggest investment by a foreign company ever in Israel and is further proof that Israel is at the forefront of technology and innovation."