With numerous agricultural jobs in Israel unfilled as a result of the war in Gaza, African migrants are looking to fill the gap.

Official estimates put the shortage of workers at between 30 000 and 40 000; this has been occasioned in large part by the inability of Palestinian workers to access their former workplaces and by foreign migrants leaving the country for fear of the conflict.

Some 1 500 workers have travelled from Kenya, as have around 400 from Malawi. Paid a monthly salary of some $1 500 each, this has meant substantial remittances for these countries. 

Last month, Malawian president Lazarus Chakwera announced that his country hoped to send 100 000 workers to Israel through an agreement with the latter’s government. This could produce some $6 million in remittances, he said.

Malawi had been engaging with Israel over the conditions of employment. Malawi has received assurances for the safety of its citizens.

Israel had been seeking to mitigate its worker shortage though recruitment elsewhere in Africa too, including in Tanzania and Uganda.

[Photo: Chris McCullough for Dairy Global]