After 7.5 years of negotiations, the government has finally reached an agreement with Ashdod Port Workers’ Union. The agreement will allow the government to move forward with its plans for a comprehensive reform of Israel’s ports, which will see new, private ports built beside existing ones.

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The agreement put an end to years of negotiations between the government and the Histadrut. The unions were forbidden to strike by court order, and accused the government of using its advantage to avoid reaching a compromise. An agreement was reached after a court rejected the government’s request to extend the strike ban last week.

Arnon Bar David, Histadrut Chairman (Photograph: Histadrut press office)

The agreement was reached thanks to negotiations between the government and chair of the Histadrut, Arnon Bar David, together with head of the Transport Workers’ Union, Avi Edri, and representatives from Ashdod Port Workers’ Union. The agreement itself is due to be published in the near future, after the Histadrut and representatives from the Ministry of Transport meet next week to finalize the details of the agreement.

Arnon Bar David commented on the agreement: “Thanks to negotiation and mutual respect we have managed to reach a compromise without having to strike. I wish to thank the Minister of Transport, Miri Regev, and Head of the Transport Workers’ Union, Avi Edri, for their cooperation.”