Government woos emigrants with jobs

US, Canadian jobs and universities have led to a steady Israeli brain drain.

By MATTHEW WAGNER
September 25, 2006 17:39
1 minute read.
ben gurion 88 298

ben gurion 88 298. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])

Israeli career opportunities are the focus of a new Absorption Ministry campaign launched on the eve of Rosh Hashana aimed at encouraging Israeli emigrants in North America to come home. US and Canadian job markets and universities have led to a steady Israeli brain drain, with some of the best and brightest opting for larger salaries and academic advancement in a geopolitically calmer part of the world. "It is difficult to compete," admitted Nadia Prigat, director of the Division for Returning Israelis in the ministry. "Young talented Israelis go abroad to upgrade themselves both academically and professionally. But that also makes them very attractive to the Israeli job market," she said. "Israel has niches, especially in hi-tech, that can offer emigrants a competitive option to living abroad." According to Absorption Ministry figures, 60 percent of about 600,000 Israeli migr s live in North America. A quarter live in Europe and the rest are scattered across the globe. Leading Israeli firms will take part in conventions in large American cities sponsored by the ministry that will focus on business and employment opportunities in Israel. The first will be held in October in New York. The ministry will spend NIS 1.5 million on the advertising campaign on Israeli satellite TV and on leading Hebrew-language Internet sites and Hebrew news media that are available in America. Nearly half of all Israeli emigrants name employment as the single most important factor for determining where to live, according to an Absorption Ministry survey. Employment ranks higher than education and housing.


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