Association of Craft and Industry in Israel - Small Enterprises (ACI) president Yossi Alkoby has called on the Ministry of Interior's Population and Immigration Authority to significantly increase the number of work permits for Palestinians coming to Israel in order to address the shortage of skilled workers in the country's factories.
The ACI says that there is a particular shortage of skilled workers in the carpentry, metals and chip processing sectors.
In a letter to the Population and Immigration Authority Alkoby said, "In recent years, we have constantly repeated that industrialists are hit by a lack of professional employees and that there is great demand from businesses for Palestinian workers, especially in carpentry, and services for construction and metals. There is severe discrimination in the allocation of permits for industry and services compared with sectors like construction and agriculture."
According to the ACI, of about 80,000 permits to work in Israel held by Palestinians from the territories, only 5.5% of them, about 4,500 workers, allow them to work in industries and services.
Alkoby said, "Processes are underway that will improve and streamline technological education and professional training in Israel but the final result in terms of professional workers for industry won't be seen in the coming few years."
He says that until the new training framework is developed in a way that will allow it to meet the requirements of the employment market, the government must allocate a professional workforce for industry by doubling the number of Palestinian workers with work permits to enter Israel to work in industry to 9,000.
The Population and Immigration Authority said, "The decision on allocating foreign workers and Palestinians and the numbers required is taken by the government in coordination with the relevant ministries."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on November 22, 2017
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