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Thousands of Chinese laborers to work in Israel

By ZHAO RUIXUE in Jinan | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-07-10 16:00

Two companies based in Shandong province and two in Jiangsu province are recruiting 6,000 Chinese laborers for a project in Israel.

More than 1,900 people have applied for a job with Weihai International Economic and Technical Cooperative Co, one of the Shandong companies, according to its deputy general manager, Zhang Hongyu.

"We will check whether applicants meet the requirements, and those who do will have to pass skill tests and a medical. There is no set time yet for when they will leave," he said.

China Shandong International Economic and Technical Cooperation Group, the other Shandong company, has received more than 1,800 applications.

Zhang said the workers will serve as steel fixers, carpenters, tilers and plasterers for construction projects in Israel, with the locations to be agreed by the two countries to ensure workers' safety.

The minimum monthly wage will be 5,200 shekels ($1,470), plus a special fund of more than 720 shekels. There will also be payment for overtime and holidays, he added.

Housing, medical insurance and transportation subsidies will also be provided to the workers, who must be age 25 to 45.

Zhan Maolin, 47, who worked as a plasterer in Israel for about 10 years recently returned to his hometown of Feicheng in Shandong. His annual salary in Israel reached 300,000 yuan ($45,000).

"Chinese construction workers can choose their employer, as there is a huge demand for them in Israel because they have a good reputation among employers," Zhan was quoted as saying by Qilu Evening News.

Employing Chinese workers is part of an Israeli government plan to address a housing shortage contributing to high property prices, Times of Israel reported on May 4.

The report said housing costs in Israel have been rising rapidly since 2008, according to Bank of Israel data, significantly impacting the cost of living and triggering a wave of street protests in 2011.

Shandong sent 69,000 people to work overseas last year, exceeding all other provinces for the ninth consecutive year. These people work in more than 130 countries and regions in the transportation, construction, dining, agriculture and fishery sectors.


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