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"Prime Minister designate Benjamin Netanyahu intends to lower taxes this year, contrary to reports that he will raise taxes and freeze tax cuts," Netanyahu's spokesman Yossi Levy said yesterday, in response to reports from Wednesday.

Levy released a statement saying Netanyahu plans to reach an agreement with the Histadrut labor federation and the employers organizations to prevent firings. "In light of the difficult situation, Netanyahu intends, first and foremost, to tax cuts in 2009," he said.

Levy said the cuts will include income taxes and corporate taxes. "In addition, Netanyahu intends to aid factories and businesses in the Negev and Galilee on an individual basis; .... to advance investment in infrastructure projects;.... and to deal with the credit shortage," said Levy.