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Israel unemployment hits 23%

Shoppers wearing protective masks against the novel coronavirus, walk through the Shuk HaCarmel, or the Carmel market, in the Israeli coastal city of Tel Aviv on May 7, 2020 [JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images]
Shoppers wearing protective masks against the novel coronavirus in Tel Aviv on 7 May 2020 [JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images]

Israel is on the verge of an economic catastrophe, the former director general of the Israeli finance ministry, Yarom Ariav, warned yesterday.

"The economic situation in Israel is so dangerous to an extent that it would lead to severe crisis if the government did not take serious steps to tackle the issue," Ariav told Ynet.

The economic adviser to the Israeli National Security Council called on the government to "act as soon as possible to reduce the growing unemployment numbers."

Yesterday, the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics reported that the number of unemployed people in the country had reached 1,079,500 citizens, adding that the country's unemployment rate had risen to 23 per cent. Before the coronavirus outbreak, Israel's unemployment rate stood at 3.9 per cent, or 180,000 citizens, according to official data.

The official bureau pointed out that the Israeli economic growth rate had declined by "6 – 8 percent," which the institution said would drop Israel's global credit rating.

READ: Gaza unemployment rate reaches 70%

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