Country Reports

Israel Country Report

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Risk Level

Very High


Executive Summary

Israel is likely moving toward a third consecutive election in early 2020 after both incumbent Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his main rival Benny Gantz failed to form a governing coalition following the September election. Netanyahu, who was indicted with corruption charges on 21 November, is increasingly likely to get ousted from the leadership of the centre-right Likud, likely ending his political career. A third election would extend the current policy deadlock into 2020, but any successor to Netanyahu would be unlikely to implement significant changes in economic or security policy.A ceasefire arrangement between Israel and Hamas arranged in May 2019 is likely to hold with the support of Egyptian mediation and Palestinian Gulf-based donors, including Qatar and Saudi Arabia, but is likely dependent on the willingness of Israel to ease the economic boycott of Gaza, albeit with sporadic rocket fire at civilian settlements around the Gazan border. There is a high risk of low-capability attacks in Jerusalem and the West Bank. Israeli willingness to use significant force against Hizbullah and allied Iranian non-state armed groups in southern Syria presents a very high risk of sudden escalation into broader conflict involving not just Syria, but also Lebanon. Israel's priority is to prevent Iranian expansion in southwest Syria near the occupied Golan Heights, and to prevent the transfer of weapons to Hizbullah through Syria. A war with Hizbullah would pose a very high risk of severe damage to civilian infrastructure in northern Israel. The US-Iran regional escalation is likely to intensify following the US assassination of Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani; however, this is only likely to spill over to the Israel-Hizbullah axis in the event of US strikes on Iran.Real GDP growth is forecast to be 3.3% in 2019 through a fairly broad-based economic expansion, with some upside by 2020 as additional natural gas capacity comes online.
Last update: January 7, 2020

Operational Outlook

Israel's operational environment is conducive to business, with few restrictions on foreign investment, but regulatory burden is a consistent impediment with lengthy business registration and construction permit approval processes. Transport and communications infrastructure is advanced, and the labour market is highly skilled but heavily unionised. Corruption is probably present in public procurement, but it is not institutional. The judiciary is largely free from external influence – including political – in litigation, but contract enforcement can frequently take years. Companies operating in Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territory risk facing an EU boycott.

Last update: November 15, 2019


Very high

There is a high risk of uncoordinated, low-capability attacks in Jerusalem and the West Bank, mostly involving Palestinians or Israeli Arabs driving vehicles into crowds of pedestrians or perpetrating shooting and knife attacks targeting IDF personnel and civilians. The uncoordinated nature of the attacks makes them difficult for the security forces to prevent. There is a high risk of Islamist cells in the West Bank plotting sophisticated attacks on civilian targets in Israel, but the risk of higher-capability suicide and IED attacks is mitigated by the IDF's tight control over access to the West Bank and Gaza Strip and extensive network of informants.

Last update: January 18, 2020


Israel has historically had a moderate crime rate, mainly characterised by low-level larceny, although the murder rate has increased since the 1990s. Murder rates and other violent crime are disproportionally high among Israel's Arab population, one of the traditionally weaker socio-economic groups.

Last update: January 18, 2020

War Risks

Israel has demonstrated willingness to resort to military force and risk war with neighbouring countries. Israel's 'red line' in Syria is intended to prevent Iranian forces and allied non-state armed groups from establishing a permanent presence near the Israeli- occupied Golan. Any limited conflict involving Israeli operations against Iranian and Hizbullah forces in Syria carries a very high risk of spilling over into Lebanon, despite neither Israel nor Hizbullah currently seeking such a war. There would be severe risk of damage to civilian infrastructure in northern Israel from projectiles fired from Syria and Lebanon. Prime Minister Netanyahu has shown willingness to avoid military escalation in Gaza.

Last update: January 18, 2020

Social Stability


Violent protests are highly probable by Palestinians around the Gaza border and, to a lesser extent, the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Any attempts by the Trump administration to propose a pro-Israeli peace settlement are likely to trigger violent protests. Protesters will probably throw stones and petrol bombs, with Israeli security forces responding with tear gas and, less frequently, live fire. Labour disputes are frequent across Israel, with short strikes most probably affecting ports and airports.

Last update: January 18, 2020

Health Risk


Vaccinations required to enter the country

No vaccinations are required to enter the country.

Routine Vaccinations

Hepatitis A: A vaccine is available for anyone over one year of age. The vaccine may not be effective for certain people, e.g. those born before 1945 and who lived as a child in a developing country and/or have a past history of jaundice (icterus). These people can instead get a shot of immune globulin (IG) to boost their immunity against the disease.

Hepatitis B: A vaccine is available for children at least two months old.

Diphtheria-Tetanus-Polio: A booster shot should be administered if necessary (once every ten years).

Other Vaccinations

Typhoid Fever: If your travels take you to regions with poor sanitary conditions (for children two years old and up).

For Children: All standard childhood immunizations should be up-to-date. In the case of a long stay, the BCG vaccine is recommended for children over one month and the MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine for children over nine months.

Last update: April 5, 2019

Natural Risks


The Jordan Rift Valley forms the northern part of the Great Rift Valley, which is at the tectonic border of the African and Asian plates. It is a seismic zone. The last recorded earthquake of note occurred in May 2014 and registered as magnitude 4.1 on the Richter scale. No major earthquake has struck the country since its founding in 1948.  

Flooding can occur in the country during the winter, especially in the southern region of Negev.

Sand and dust storms occasionally occur and can reduce visibility as well as disrupt traffic.

Last update: April 5, 2019



For security reasons, people traveling to Israel can be randomly selected for questioning upon arrival. If this occurs, cooperate with authorities and remain patient. Israeli airlines implement strict security procedures and long wait times at airports are common.

Roads are in good condition, however driving can be difficult due to differing norms (e.g. signaling, changing lanes, merging) and aggressive drivers. In the West Bank, it is advised to remain extremely vigilant due to poorly maintained roads in rural areas. Moreover, it is advisable to allow additional time for travel due to the presence of checkpoints on major roads, especially near Ramallah, Hebron, Bethlehem, and Nablus. Collective taxis called "service" are the only available public transport in the Palestinian Territories.

A railway network connects the cities of Nahariya, Haifa, Tel Aviv, and Beer-Sheva, as well as Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Last update: April 5, 2019

Practical Information


Winters are generally mild and summers are hot and humid. Rain can fall between November and March, sometimes even into May.

Useful Numbers

Country Code: +972
Police: 100
Fire Dept.: 102
Ambulance: 101


Voltage: 220 V ~ 50 Hz


Last update: April 5, 2019