Industry and Trade Minister Eliahu Yishai (Shas) has submitted a motion to the government to establish a loan fund for firms in Sderot and communities surrounding Gaza whose business has been compromised by the deteriorated security situation. The model would be identical to the fund launched in August 2006 to benefit businesses in the North, following the Second Lebanon War.
According to Yishai's motion, the Finance Ministry would provide an additional budget of NIS 20 million for bank guarantees. He also suggests the treasury provide an extra NIS 700,000 to run a consultation and coaching program for small businesses in the area.
Yishai noted the prevailing harsh reality has caused many businesses to suffer and even collapse. He added, "The difficult situation of businesses in Sderot and communities around Gaza has continued for over five years."
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