Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
is expected to present his new cabinet as soon as Wednesday. According to sources involved with the negotiations, many issues were resolved in Friday morning talks.
The prime minister met Yesh Atid
Chairman Yair Lapid Friday morning, followed by meeting of the two party chairs' negotiation teams.
According to the sources, Lapid must now decide whether to assume the Finance portfolio.
If he decides to do so, Habayit Hayehudi
Chairman Naftali Bennett will take on the Industry, Trade and Labor portfolio. If Lapid decides to pass on the treasury, his party is likely to seize the Interior portfolio, which will leave the Finance Ministry to Habayit Hayehudi.
Speaking to Channel 1 news Friday, the current Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz
addressed the possibility that Yair Lapid will be the next finance minister, saying: "I am convinced that Yair Lapid is an intelligent person and I have no doubt that he will make a good finance minister."
Referring to public opinion that Lapid is too inexperienced for the position, the finance minister added: "When I was first appointed, people had their doubts… but we ended up having the best economic condition in the west in the last 34 years."
Steinitz stressed that he was referring to the possibility of Lapid in the treasury but that no final agreements to the matter have been devised.
According to assessments, Yesh Atid will also be in charge of the Education and Health portfolios.
The cabinet is expected to consist of some 23-24 ministers.
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