Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon, in Washington for talks with Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin and other officials, took time from his schedule to greet leaders of the Washington Israel Bonds campaign. At a dinner in his honor held July 23 at a private home, the finance minister addressed numerous issues, beginning with Israel’s economy, which, he said, was “very strong.”
Israel Bonds President & CEO Israel Maimon (left) greets Finance Minister
The finance minister cited low unemployment, a record low debt-to-GDP ratio of 62.1 percent and additional measures such as opening the market to increased imports and cutting corporate taxes to “encourage more investment.” He also shared an update on his initiative to provide qualified first-time buyers with subsidized housing through a lottery system.
Kahlon discussed three security challenges facing Israel: the situation in Syria; Iranian support for terror, which he termed “unprecedented’; and cyber warfare. He summed it up by stating, “It is a challenge to live in our area.”
The finance minister nonetheless assured his audience “Israel is strong and resilient.” He added, “We need your help, and know we can count on you to be there for us. Your help," he emphasized, "is fundamental to us.”
Finance Minister Kahlon tells Bonds leadership "We know we can count
The finance minister subsequently tweeted about the evening, saying, “Yesterday I met with leaders of Israel Bonds in Washington. I thanked them for their incredible and historic contribution to the State of Israel.”
Following his meetings in Washington, Finance Minister Kahlon continued on to New York, where he was also scheduled to meet with Bonds leadership.
Earlier this year, the finance minister noted the achievement of exceeding $40 billion in worldwide sales since the inception of Israel Bonds in 1951. Kahlon wrote: “Since its founding, Israel Bonds has been a cornerstone of Israel’s economy. Crossing the $40 billion mark exemplifies the organization’s dedication to Israel, and the way in which its message of economic support has resonated on a global scale. On behalf of the government and people of Israel, I wish to thank Israel Bonds and its worldwide client base for helping to build every sector of our economy.”
The finance minister with dinner hosts Debra and Dennis Berman
(Photos: Freed Photography)