Zim Integrated Shipping Services Ltd. has agreed to increase traffic to the Haifa port despite ongoing missile strikes by the Hizbullah in the area.
As activity at the Haifa port has been reopened, the Manufacturers' Association of Israel has called upon Zim, which is controlled by the Israel Corporation, to increase shipping capacity to Israeli industry.
Zvi Plada, chairman of the haulage division at the Manufacturers' Association said Doron Goder, CEO of Zim, had agreed to add at least two additional ships a day to Haifa. Currently, Zim operates four to four ships a day to the Haifa port.
Plada added that since hostilities broke out on the northern border, capacity at the port was 15 percent short but that the decision by to accommodate the request showed a sense of national responsibility.
As a result of the partial closure of the Haifa port and the rerouting of shipments to the Ashdod port, the number of containers arriving at Ashdod between July 17 and 29 was 35% higher than the average volume of traffic during the first six months of the year. Plada disclosed that output at the Port of Ashdod, which has been working around-the-clock to absorb traffic had increased by 80% to 100%.
Plada added that heightened efforts by the Ashdod port workers had helped to reduce the damage to Israeli exports and imports. Still, if the war continued, the Ashdod port would have to increase manpower and boost productivity, Plada said.
Separately, promises by the Interior Minister Roni Bar-On and Finance Minister Avraham Hirchson to transfer funds for the payment of salaries of local authority employees of the town of Yesod Hama'alah, which has been hard hit by rocket missiles, have not been honored.
Even though, employees were not paid in seven months, they continued to come to work every day during the conflict in order to operate the war situation room of Yesod Hama'alah.
"The local authority workers see no other choice than to leave the council from next week because of their economic plight," David Amsaleg, chairman of the workers' council of Yesod Hama'alah, wrote in a letter to the prime minister.
The town residents are concerned that if local authority workers do not turn up for work, security issues and social help in the area of conflict will not be handled, particularly because the few remaining residents of the town were mainly elderly people and the handicapped.