In her debut speech as newly-installed Governor of the Bank of Israel, Karnit Flug on Tuesday called for an end to discrimination against its Arab population, lest it suffer the economic and social consequences, the Jerusalem Post reported.
Addressing the third annual Prime Minster’s Conference on economic issues, which focused this time on the Arab sector, Flug said that based on current demographic data, if the Arabs are not better integrated into the workforce, the economy could lose 1.3% of annual economic growth.
“The Arab population in Israel contains immense untapped potential from the standpoint of the Israeli economy’s growth capability. Beyond the economic potential, the issue also contains highly significant social potential,” she said.
While acknowledging the need for more education and training, she said “the incidence of discrimination must also not be ignored,” and singled out the hi-tech sector in particular, where she lamented that even well-trained Arab Israelis have trouble successfully integrating.