President Shimon Peres telephoned mega tycoon Yitzhak Tshuva whose Delek company was part of the conglomerate that drilled and developed the Tamar gas reservoir which will play a most significant role in Israel's future economy.
"Without you, this tremendous phenomenon would not have happened," Peres told Tshuva, adding that bringing a flow of natural gas to Israel was an historic, unprecedented process. "I don't have sufficient blessings in my heart to bestow on you," the exuberant and elated Peres declared.
Tshuva, who was excited to receive the president's call, said that this new development could reduce the cost of electricity by as much as fifty per cent and he hoped that this would prove beneficial both to private consumers and to factory plants dependent on this kind of energy.
Earlier in the day, in the course of meetings with Chief Rabbis Shlomo Amar and Yona Metzger, as well as with Shas spiritual mentor Ovadia Yosef, Peres had praised Tshuva, saying that he had remained stubbornly optimistic in the face of the general lack of enthusiasm in Israel, and that he had found an American drilling company to carry out the essential work. It was Tshuva's stubbornness and vision which had brought Israel to this new level of energy independence where it stands today, Peres underscored.