Prof. Amir Yaron told "Bloomberg" that a fourth lockdown would shave 0.5% off of Israel's GDP growth in 2021.
As the infection rate in Israel rises sharply, with 6,363 new Covid cases reported yesterday, the highest figure since February, Bank of Israel Governor Pro. Amir Yaron has warned against a fourth lockdown. He told "Bloomberg" today that everything should be done to avoid another lockdown and that it would shave 0.5% off of GDP growth in Israel in 2021. The Bank of Israel's last forecast was for 5.5% growth in Israel in 2021.
Yaron's comments bring the Bank of Israel into line with the Ministry of Finance. Yesterday Minister of Finance Avigdor Liberman stressed that everything must be done to avoid a lockdown. The extent of the dangers posed by the current Delta wave were unclear, Liberman said, but there was a consensus about the economic damage that a lockdown would do.
The main concern of the government is that talk of a lockdown will persuade many people to reduce expenditure and save their money for 'a rainy day.' There are already indications of a slowdown in demand with a sharp fall in credit card expenditure on education and leisure with the Central Bureau of Statistics consumer confidence data also falling.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on August 10, 2021
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Amir Yaron Photo: Bank of Israel spokesperson