Benjamin Netanyahu backed Israel’s economic plan last week, indicating there was no need to make changes to the current system. The prime minister pointed to the Jewish state’s financial growth as evidence, which is above the average set by the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development).
The stance came during a meeting with OECD Secretary General Angel Gurria and Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz. The trio gathered to discuss the global economy and Israel’s development in the financial market. While in the Jewish state, Gurria also met with President Shimon Peres and Stanley Fischer, governor of the Bank of Israel.
"Israel up to now has done better than most of the OECD countries, indeed than most countries.... We’ve done better because we maintained the right policies. We had greater growth than the OECD. We have much lower unemployment. We added 250,000 jobs in three years," Netanyahu said. "The policies that have worked for us so far are the policies that will work for us in the future: control spending, be careful and responsible, encourage growth, enact reforms."
"They have done very well, exceptionally well, in a very, very difficult world economy. The fact that you grew at all in a year like 2009 - you were in decline and then you recovered very fast to close to five percent in 2010 and 2011. You're going to be above three percent this year, closer to four percent next year. This is quite exceptional, and it is double or triple, depending on which part of the world you see, in terms of speed," Gurria said.
Steinitz added that Israel still has work to do: "Gurria told us that things are still dangerous. He came here to warn us that the crisis is still extant. We received a severe warning that there is a global economic war, and that there are a lot of risks, including in Europe. The crisis may worsen. That is why protecting the economy against the failures of other governments, like Italy and Greece, is a key objective. To achieve this, we must stick to the policies of maintaining the budget framework and a reasonable deficit. This is a necessary condition for keeping the achievements. Gurria said that it would be dangerous if we don’t keep the budget frameworks and expenditures."