Netanyahu and Kahlon.
Netanyahu and Kahlon.Credit: Alex Kolomisky

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon are expected to meet on Thursday for a decisive discussion on merging the Kulanu party with the Likud.

The negotiations for a merger are in an advanced stage, according to the evening news report on Kan News. Kahlon is expected to raise several demands as a condition for advancing the merger during the meeting.

One condition that Kahlon demanded is leaving the treasury and economic portfolios in the hands of Kulanu members for the next term, as well as the representation of about 10% of party members in Likud institutions.

In the past, Netanyahu had proposed a much more generous offer to Kahlon to merge Kulanu with the Likud but following the results of the recent elections, it was clear to both sides that Kahlon's bargaining power had dropped significantly.

Kahlon began his political career in the Likud, where he gained most of his popularity during his tenure as Minister of Communications. In 2012, Kahlon left the government and political life. But he made a comeback prior to the elections for the 20th Knesset and founded the Kulanu party, which won an impressive ten seats.

However, Kahlon's last term as finance minister was a difficult one from a public standpoint, and he won only four Knesset seats in the recent elections.