According to a recent report by the Central Bureau of Statistics, the average salary in the computers, electronic products and optical devices manufacturing industry in Israel amounted to NIS 22,411 per month ($6,580) in 2019. The report covers 2019 data and does not include the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on the industry. This constitutes an increase of about 25% compared to 2015, in which the average salary amounted to NIS 19,885 ($5,840).
At that time there was a very small change in the number of workers in the industry: in 2015 it included 68,200 employees, while in 2019 this number reached roughly 69,800. The meaning is that the rise in salaries indicates a shortage of manpower in the industry. In the entire high-tech industry, the average salary amounted to NIS 23,545 per month in 2019 – more than double the national average salary – which amounted to NIS 10,783 per month.
This industry that provides almost a tenth of the employee jobs in the economy: 323,400 jobs out of 3.74 million jobs in the entire economy. The main component of the industry is the provision of software and communications services, which accounted for approximately 227,400 employee jobs in 2019.
In practice, the number of employees in the electronics industry is slightly higher than the CBS’s estimates, since in the official data, the local 49,900 R&D workers are grouped inside the High-tech Services category. In 2019, the Israeli industry employed about 49,900 R&D workers, whose average salary was NIS 28,000 a month.
The main problem is that during that period there was no increase in the industry’s output, and exports even fell slightly. In 2015, Israeli exports of computers, electronicS and optical equipment amounted to approximately $12.59 billion – constituting an all-time Israeli record. Then began a decline that reached a low of $10.5 billion in 2009, and in the following two years exports recovered slightly and reached approximately $11.42 billion in 2019.
The conclusion is that the Israeli electronics industry has reached the year of COVID-19 when it is in a dire situation, facing a decline in output and sales – along with a significant increase in expenses.