Following an acute shortage of workers, the Tourism Ministry and the Israel Hotel Association will hold employment fairs throughout the country during September to recruit more than 4,500 workers. To make up for a shortage of 4,500 workers in the Israeli inn-keeping industry and 500 workers for other tourism locations the Tourism Ministry and Israel Hotel Association are joining efforts to locate and train potential employees at three employment affairs. "The intense growth of incoming tourism to Israel has created a severe shortage in employees. The Tourism Ministry works to promote and develop manpower in the industry as part of the ministry's policy and the target of bringing 5 million tourists to Israel by the year of 2012," Tourism Minister, Ruhama Avraham-Ballila, said. The three employment fairs will be held at the Kfar Hamacabia Hotel in Ramat Gan on September 15th, at the Renaissance Hotel in Jerusalem on September 16th, and at the Meridian Hotel in Haifa, on September 17th, from 2pm to 6 pm. Forty representatives of different companies in the tourism industry will participate in the fairs and offer potential employees a variety of positions in tour guiding, travel agencies, tour operating and more. "The tourism industry in Israel is becoming more and more important for the future of the Israeli economy in particular at a time of growing signs of a recession and a slowdown of the entire economy," Eli Gonen, President of Israel Hotel Association, said. "Precisely at this time, the employment fairs can constitute a basis for the absorption of new workers from everywhere across the country and especially in the peripheries." Israel's hotel industry employs approximately 30,000 workers out of the tourism sector, which includes more than 100,000 workers.