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SPAR, A Dutch Retailer, Will Join The Israeli Market Amid Rising Living Costs

SPAR, A Dutch Retailer, Will Join The Israeli Market Amid Rising Living Costs
Amit Zeev, an Israeli businessman, claimed he has signed a preliminary agreement to bring the Dutch grocery retail chain SPAR to Israel, which would increase competition and potentially cut food prices, which have risen in recent months.
Zeev was previously the CEO of Yeinot Bitan, one of Israel's major grocery chains. He stated that he signed a statement of intent with SPAR and intends to bring in more global brands "at a lower price range than is currently offered in Israel."
Carrefour, a French retailer, is set to enter the Israeli market later this year. According to a March agreement, 150 Yeinot Bitan locations will be transformed to Carrefour.
Zeev is working on a similar strategy and is in talks with existing grocery chains about converting them to SPAR, which has 13,600 locations in 48 countries.
The cost of living is predicted to be a major issue in Israel's general election on November 1. Annual inflation is 4.4 per cent, significantly lower than in most Western countries, yet Israelis have seen prices for most basic products rise, while the Bank of Israel is rapidly hiking interest rates to combat pricing pressures.
The government has scored a tiny win by pushing merchants to postpone a planned 20% increase in monitored bread prices.
Yair Lapid, the caretaker prime minister of Israel, told cabinet colleagues on Sunday that growing living costs are a "national affliction" that must be addressed.
"It cannot be there will be a wealthy country here with people who cannot finish the month," he said.
Lapid went on to say that he expects Carrefour's presence to result in significant discounts.
"We expect other major companies to follow in its wake," he said.
"From here I say to all the players in the market: Whoever raises prices irresponsibly is liable to get up in the morning and find themselves with unexpected competition. This government believes in competition and opening markets and it will not hesitate to act."

Christopher J. Mitchell

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