Manufacturers Clash with Netanyahu Over Number of Regulators

YERUSHALAYIM -

The Israeli government rejected on Monday an allegation by the manufacturers association that the number of regulators have increased, saying that the number has actually gone down, Globes reported.

Manufacturers Association of Israel president and Federation of Israeli Economic Organizations/Chambers of Commerce chairman Shraga Brosh sent a letter to Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu charging that the number of regulators has risen steeply, from 170 in 2014 to 216 currently, a change which hampers business activity in the country.

Mr. Brosh criticized the prime minister for failing to follow through on a promise to trim the regulatory burden on business, and called on him to adopt the model advocated by U.S. President Donald Trump—revoking two existing regulations for each new regulation.

“One of the main reasons why regulation in Israel is not decreasing is that the cabinet decision on the subject includes a number of exceptions that are thwarting the efforts to reduce the regulatory burden in Israel,” Mr. Brosh asserted in the letter.

The Prime Minister’s Office not only rejected Mr. Brosh’s claim that regulators have been added, but maintained that, on the contrary, the number has declined.

“The allegation that the number of regulators rose is ridiculous. Not only has the number of regulators not increased, but regulation has been cut by 25 percent and is meeting the government targets.

“After years, the government decided to address the problem of excess regulation and bureaucracy, and the results of the decision are already visible in the hotel business, cosmetics imports, electrical goods, medical equipment, and registration of contractors, among other things. Next week, regulation will be eased in the Land Registry, custodianship supervision, and patent registration.”

While it was not clear what was the cause of the statistical discrepancy, it is possible that it stems from different sources. Mr. Brosh relied on a study conducted by the Manufacturers Association, whereas the PMO was presumably using official government figures.