Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked decided on Monday, in an attempt to solve the manpower shortage in the restaurant industry, to add another 500 Palestinian Arab workers to the existing quota of 1,500 so that the industry's quota now stands at 2,000 workers.

The decision was made following the request of Deputy Minister Abir Kara.

Minister Shaked said, "Following requests and inquiries from all the restaurant organizations, we have increased by 30% the number of Palestinians who can enter Israel and start working."

Deputy Minister Kara added, "Restaurant owners need more manpower and today I am happy to announce that, following joint work with the Minister of the Interior, we have approved increasing quotas for employing Palestinian workers in restaurants. A complementary step to the work with the Minister of the Interior to reduce bureaucracy related to business licensing. The move we made will help business owners, especially after the COVID-19 crisis, and will help them find working hands."

"The move will increase the productivity of the restaurants and lead to a reduction in staff costs in restaurants and a reduction in the cost of living. It should also be remembered that these are jobs that Israelis are not interested in filling and therefore a solution of Palestinian workers is needed," Kara said.

Shai Berman, CEO of the Restaurant Association, concluded, "I thank the Ministers of Finance, Economy and the Interior, and Deputy Minister Kara who responded to us and acted quickly and efficiently to increase the quota of Palestinian workers in restaurants. This quota will not solve our manpower shortage but we hope this is one of the solutions that will alleviate our stress."