Eli Groner: Controlled apt. pricing has led to low construction quality

Eli Groner is the newly appointed managing director of the Israel office of Koch Disruptive Technologies.

April 5, 2019 04:30
1 minute read.
Eli Groner: Controlled apt. pricing has led to low construction quality

Managing Director of the Israel office of Koch Disruptive Technologies Eli Groner. (photo credit: ISRAEL HADARI)

The cost of living in Israel has featured heavily in ongoing Israeli media campaigns as the nation faces elections on Tuesday.

One of the biggest concerns being discussed is the high cost of rent in major Israeli cities and the extremely high cost of buying an apartment.

These led some Israelis to opt for different lifestyles such as sailing around the world, which they claim is cheaper than living in Israel, and for many young Israelis to try living in more affordable cities, such as Berlin.

The newly appointed Managing Director of the Israel office of Koch Disruptive Technologies, Eli Groner, claimed that the Israeli real estate market is inefficient as planning committees, local authorities and government offices in charge of real estate related policies do not work well together.

“Efforts by the Ministry of Finance to tell the free market what will be the final price of an apartment has brought about a reduction in construction standards,” he said at a real estate event held in Tel Aviv on Thursday.

The Koch brothers are famous for contributing to libertarian think tanks and objecting to governments assuming protective roles in the economy.

In the 2018 film Vice, their names are mentioned alongside other noted financers of conservative and libertarian causes, such as funding efforts to introduce the notion that an inheritance tax is a "death tax." 

In the film, the effort to change the way the tax is seen by the American public is presented as a focused campaign backed by powerful donors.

Low safety and building standards are an ongoing issue in Israel, with Haaretz reporting in 2018 that despite the fact an apartment is likely to be the most expensive thing an Israeli is expected to purchase in his or her life-time, it is also usually extremely low in quality and safety.

Relatedly, roughly 36 construction workers died in 2018 while working on building sites, Calcalist reported earlier this year.



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