Aviad Friedman
Aviad FriedmanMiri Shimonovitz, GPO

With prices of virtually everything rising, will house prices drop? Very unlikely, according to the director-general of the Housing Ministry, Aviad Friedman. "Anyone who promises a drop in prices is either a liar or a magician," he told Kan Reshet Bet on Thursday.

"What I can promise you is that we are working hard to increase the supply," he continued. "We are also trying to turn more and more towns into places where people can buy homes at reasonable prices. There's no need to live in Tel Aviv.

"We're also working to increase the supply of new building starts," he added. "That's our job -- to provide people with a roof over their heads, and primarily for young couples and those who have yet to purchase a home -- not for people who are buying their second or third property. The lotteries we run are for these people, for those truly in need."

Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked, also interviewed on Kan Reshet Bet on Thursday, expressed similar sentiments.

"It's very simple -- a matter of supply and demand," she said. "All the same, during the two years that we did not have a functioning government, 50 thousand housing units were marketed, and plans were drawn up for far fewer apartments than are needed. To date we have marketed 100 thousand housing units and sold 100 thousand. I am doing everything I can to shorten the planning and registration processes and to increase the supply as fast as possible."