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Israel Privatizes...

International Outlook: GLOBAL WRAPUP


The Israeli government is on a new push to boost investment in its economy--with some success. It has sold $630 million in state assets in the first two months of 1995. In one of the biggest deals, the Shikun U'Pituah construction company was sold for $280 million to a group of investors that included Canada's Charles Bronfman. Stakes in Israel Chemicals, Bezek Telecommunications, ZIM Israel Navigation, and El Al, the Israeli airline, are next on the block. The government also plans to offer stock options in state-owned companies worth $200 each to every Israeli citizen registered to vote. Israelis can use the options to buy shares in state-owned companies or cash them in. The government hopes its efforts will lead to $1.5 billion in state asset sales in 1995--and lift the drooping Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.EDITED BY CHRISTOPHER POWER

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