Tel Aviv – Israel’s main labour union signed an agreement with private- sector employers to raise the minimum wage, averting a general strike slated for next week.

The Histadrut labour federation, the umbrella organisation for 700,000 workers, said the minimum wage will be raised to 5,000 shekels ($1,253) a month. It will be increased in three stages by 2017, with the first hike to 4,650 shekels a month set for next April.

The Histadrut had been demanding an increase in the minimum wage to 5,300 shekels a month from 4,300 and threatened to strike starting Dec. 7.

Under the deal, the minimum wage starting in 2017 will be adjusted to be 52 percent of the country’s average wage but will not fall below 5,000 shekels a month.