Disengagement cost balloons

Costs will reach NIS 7.5-8 billion, compared with original projections of NIS 5 billion.

The disengagement plan will cost NIS 7.5-8 billion, according to an official Ministry of Finance estimate. The figure is NIS 2.5-3 billion, or 50-60%, more than the original estimate of NIS 5 billion.

The Evacuation Compensation Law will cost over NIS 4.6 billion, and Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Public Security costs will reach NIS 2.5 billion.

Disengagement costs are projected to spread out over three years, 2005-07, with most of the spending NIS 6 billion occurring in 2005 and 2006.

Government sources are beginning to unofficially mention an even higher figure of NIS 9.5 billion, almost double the official estimate. The extra costs include spending on the Nitzanim plan and development expenditures for absorbing evacuees in the Negev and Galilee.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on August 14, 2005

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