|Idan Hanegev (The Negev Era) is a new industrial park in Bnei Shimon, between Lehavim and the Bedouin city of Rahat.
The 3,500-dunam industrial zone is a joint initiative of Bnei Shimon Regional Council, Rahat municipality and Lehavim Local Council and is the first Jewish-Bedouin project of its kind.
Currently in the early stages of development, the park will host 130 factories, a hospital, and an employment training college.
The park’s proximity to Beer Sheva, Route 6 and the railway station at Lehavim, as well as low municipal taxes and state subsidies, make Idan Hanegev an attractive location for major companies.
The cornerstone was laid for the park in April 2010, by the mayors of the three local authorities collaborating in the project, Industry, Trade and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben Eliezer and Galilee Development Minister Silvan Shalom.
Inauguration ceremony at Idan Hanegev Park. Left to right: Sigal Moran, Mayor of Bnei Shimon Regional Council; Faiz Abu Sahiban, Mayor of Rahat; Galilee Development Minister Silvan Shalom; Industry, Trade and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben Eliezer; Eli Levi, Mayor of Lehavim Municipal Council