Starting from next month, the working week in Israel will be cut by one hour to 42 hours, in accordance with an extension order signed by Minister of Labor, Social Affairs and Social Services Haim Katz a short while ago. The order applies the agreement reached by Histadrut (General Federation of Labor in Israel) chairman Avi Nissenkorn with the employers to the economy as a whole. The shortening of the work week became possible thanks to a general collective agreement reached a year ago between Nissenkorn and President of Manufacturers Association of Israel Shraga Brosh. The agreement was adopted two months ago by Minister of Finance Moshe Kahlon.
The change that will come into force on April 1 will be without any reduction in pay, and from then on hourly pay will be calculated on the basis of 182 working hours per month instead of 186 hours as at present. This will mean a rise in the hourly rate for workers on the minimum wage.
This is the first time since 1995 that workers in Israel have benefitted from a cut in working hours. It means that Israelis will work 50 hours less annually, without losing pay. The shorter working day each week will be determined by employers, taking into account requests and needs of employees.
Nissenkorn said, "This move improves the balance between work and leisure, and is an important first step towards the goal of a working week of only 40 hours in Israel."
"This is a welcome move by Histadrut chairman Avi Nissenkorn on behalf of Israel's workers. The trend should be completed towards a further cut," said Katz.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on March 18, 2018
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