More than 12,000 new immigrants
Photo: Reuters
About 154,000 new babies (illustration)
Photo: Reuters

7.4 million people living in Israel

Ahead of State's 61st anniversary, Central Bureau of Statistics figures reveal Israel's population increased by some 129,000 people since last Independence Day. More than 75% of residents are Jewish; 154,000 babies born in Israel in past year

On the eve of its 61st anniversary, the State of Israel's population numbers about 7,411,000 people, the Central Bureau of Statistics revealed in figures released Monday.


According to the data, the Jewish population is comprised of about 5,593,000 residents (75.5% of the population), the Arab population is comprised of 1,498,000 people (20.2%) and 320,000 people (4.3%) belonging to "other groups" – immigrants and offspring who are not recognized as Jews by the Interior Ministry.


Ahmad Halihal, head of the demography department at the CBS, said that the percentage of Jews in Israel was declining, but not significantly.


On the eve of last year's Independence Day, Israel's population numbered some 7,282,000 people. Since then, about 154,000 babies have been born and more than 12,000 immigrants have arrived in the country.


In total, the State's population grew by some 129,000 residents – a 1.8% rise. The natural growth rate among the Jews is 1.6%, while in the Arab sector the growth rate is 2.6%.


The size of the Israeli family has declined over the years. While in the 1970s an average family was 3.5 members, now it includes 3.1 members.


The data also revealed that 70% of the Jewish population is comprised of "sabras" – people born in Israel, at least half of them a second generation in Israel, compared to only 35% defined as "sabras" in 1948.


In 1948 Israel only had one city with more than 100,000 – Tel Aviv-Jaffa (248,000 people). Today, there are 14 cities which have more than 100,000 residents, five of them with over 200,000 people: Jerusalem (nearly 748,000), Tel Aviv-Jaffa (about 400,000), Haifa (265,000), Rishon Lezion (225,000) and Ashdod (207,000).


Petah Tivka is the city which exhibited the sharpest rise in the number of resident – 2.5%, followed by Bnei Brak and Jerusalem with a 2% rise – although thousands of residents left these two cities in the past year and the rise is the result of natural growth.


The population of Bat Yam and Haifa saw a decline since last year's Independence Day.


פרסום ראשון: 04.27.09, 14:23
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