State-owned defense co to pay gov't NIS 200m dividend

Rony Hizkiyahu  photo: Tamar Matsafi

Dividends from state-owned companies in Israel are expected to top NIS 1 billion this year.

Good news for the Ministry of Finance as it tries to cope with the ballooning fiscal deficit: a state-owned defense company is shortly expected to distribute a dividend to the state of NIS 200 million, "Globes" has learned. The transfer will be executed once the requisite legal approvals have been obtained.

Last month, Accountant General Rony Hizkiyahu mentioned a defense company that had made a one-time transfer to the Ministry of Finance enabling the government to narrow the deficit. Speaking at a session of the Knesset Finance Committee, Hizkiyahu specified a sum of NIS 1.7 billion that had been transferred to the state, but enquiries revealed that the actual amount was lower. It may be that Hizkiyahu was including the additional amount still to be transferred this year.

The dividend to be received from the defense company comes in a record year for dividends from state-owned companies. Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. has transferred a dividend of NIS 600 million to the state, and smaller sums are due to be received from Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) (TASE: ARSP.B1) and the Ashdod Port Company. Total state revenues from companies it controls will surpass the NIS 1 billion mark this year, after in previous years they amounted to NIS 50-200 million at most. This acquires extra importance given the fact that the fiscal deficit is liable to reach NIS 50 billion this year, NIS 10 billion more than planned in the 2019 budget.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on December 2, 2019

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2019

Rony Hizkiyahu  photo: Tamar Matsafi
Rony Hizkiyahu photo: Tamar Matsafi
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