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The demise of the Public Works Department (Ma'atz) has begun - 715 workers will be fired gradually and a new state company will replace the PWD. The new firm will hire 200 of the laid-off workers in two stages.

The Ministry of Transport will start closing down the PWD entirely this week and start forming the new public roads firm in its place. This will function as coordinator for public road projects in a fashion similar to the Trans-Israel Highway Company or Netivei Ayalon.

The changes will take several months - the number of projects the PWD now handles will be reduced, and the rest will be transfered to the new company.

The "new PWD" will mostly supervise outsourced projects. It will beging operating in the next few weeks and its offices will be separate from those of the PWD.