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The Bank of Israel supports the decision of the Minister of Finance to set the deficit target at 3 percent for 2014, as presented today at the meeting with the Prime Minister and published a short time ago by the Ministry of Finance.  The Governor of the Bank of Israel, Prof. Stanley Fischer, said, "I very much appreciate the decision by the Finance Minister and his decisiveness in taking the budgetary steps required to return the budget to a responsible path.  I believe that the difficult decision reached by the Minister, its implementation and his desire to continue protecting the economy will reinstate the trust in fiscal policy that was an essential factor in the Israeli economy's ability to successfully face the financial crisis in the past few years, and which is very important in how it deals with the challenges it faces. It is clear that the implementation of this decision will require taking painful steps.  However, we must understand that this decision is necessary for the protection of the economy against deterioration, and for the economy's future growth and stability."