Defense Minister Benny Gantz announced on Sunday the country’s first production line for quality masks, amid reports of a resurgence of the coronavirus pandemic.
“We are preparing for a second wave of the virus,” AFP quoted Gantz as saying, adding that local production “removes our dependence on foreign factors and contributes to the Israeli economy during a difficult period.”
The new N95 masks are to be manufactured in Sderot, using machines imported from China by the Defense Ministry.
The N95 is considered to afford greater protection against infection than the simple, light blue cotton masks currently available throughout the country.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health released an update on the path of the coronavirus, with data showing which cities are hardest-hit.
Yerushalayim had 176 confirmed coronavirus cases in the past week alone, and 511 active patients. The doubling ratio in the capital over this period of time has been 1.44.
In the southern Bedouin city of Rahat, 33 new cases were recorded last week, and the doubling ratio in the city is now 6.5. In Tel Aviv, 79 new cases have been confirmed since the beginning of the week.
Bnei Brak had 33 new cases over the past week, Sderot 16, and the Arab-Israeli town of Ar’ara 21. Hadera had nine confirmed coronavirus cases.