The new law gives Minister of the Interior Aryeh Deri powers to prevent stores from opening on Saturdays.
The Knesset gave second and third readings to the "supermarkets bill" early this morning, Walla! News reports. At 7:40, the bill was passed by a majority of one: 58 in favor and 57 against. Four MKs of the Yisrael Beitenu party, which is part of the coalition, voted against the bill, and other individual coalition MKs absented themselves from the vote.
The new law gives Minister of the Interior Aryeh Deri (Shas) the ability to prevent stores from opening on Saturdays by disqualifying municipal bylaws. Fuel station convenience stores were exempted from the law, but the city of Eilat was not.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was reported as saying at a meeting of Likud MKs that the supermarkets law had been forced upon him, as had the law for the death penalty for terrorists. "These are laws that are forced upon us, whether we like them or not, by coalition agreements, and the agreements are now being tendered for payment. I'm not worried about it - that's how things are. You sign a coalition agreement and then you have to fulfil it," Netanyahu said, adding that after the supermarkets bill passed "people will look and see that there's no change; it's a lot of noise and commotion."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 9, 2018
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