Treasury budget head Shaul Meridor quits, attacks Katz

Shaul Meridor

Meridor sent an angry resignation letter to Minister of Finance Israel Katz alleging that he was not being allowed to do his work.

Ministry of Finance head of the Budget Division has resigned. In an angry resignation letter to Minister of Finance Israel Katz, Meridor made grave allegations and said, "You do not allow me and many other public servants in various departments at the Ministry of Finance and other government ministries to do what we know how to do - to form, to propose, to analyze and to criticize policy measures which allow the Israeli economy to succeed during this period of difficult economic crisis that has hit."

Meridor's resignation comes following an especially traumatic week for the professional echelon at the Ministry of Finance during which Katz implemented a range of policies against the advice of his senior professional civil servants. These measures included Katz's support for a NIS 1 billion allocation beyond the regular budget, and increasing the quotas of foreign workers and Palestinian workers to 30,000.

Some speculated that Meridor delayed his resignation in order to see if there were going to be elections, only quitting once it became clear that there would not be.

Katz responded, "Since I assumed office I have given huge backing to the Ministry of Finance's professional team including Shaul Meridor, as I have done in my previous positions. Regretfully due to narrow political considerations, Meridor began to work blatantly and publicly against government policy and against the policy that I led at the Ministry of Finance, and consequently his resignation as head of the Budget Division is correct and called for."

There has also recently been tensions between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Meridor following a statement by Blue & White leader Benny Gantz that he had met with senior Ministry of Finance officials who presented him with a gloomy forecast on Israel's economy. Meridor did not deny that the meeting had taken place.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on August 31, 2020 © Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2020

Shaul Meridor
Shaul Meridor
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