Bnei Barak. Most crowded
Photo: Yaron Brener
Census figures ahead of New Year: 7.46 million Israelis, most live in center
As New Year is upon us, Central Bureau of Statistics publishes 2008 figures on Israeli population – 75.47% of population is Jewish, 20.26% is Arab. Israeli population relatively young compared to rest of world, but prefer to get married later in life. Center is most densely populated region
The Central Bureau of Statistics published figures showing the current state of affairs on the eve of the Jewish New Year. The statistics paint a picture of Israeli society in which people are in no rush to get married, prefer living in the crowded Tel Aviv Metropolitan area to the Galilee and the Negev, and eat an average of 3,522 a day.


According to CBS figures, 7,456,000 people live in Israel, about 5,634,000 of whom are Jewish (75.47%), 1,513,000 are Arab (20.26%), and 318,000 are defined as "other" – a group made up mostly of immigrants and their families who are not registered as Jews. The rate of population growth registered at 1.8%. The Jewish population is growing at a rate of 1.7%, while the Arab population is growing at a rate of 2.6%.


Israeli society was found to be young relatively. In 2008, 28.4% of the population were children under the age of 14, as compared to the 17% average in other western countries. At the same time, 9.7% of the population is aged 65 and over, while the average for other western countries is 15%. The percentage of the population over the age of 75 grew, and now stands at 5.6% as opposed to 3.8% some 20 years ago.


Life expectancy continues to climb. The life expectancy for men was 79.1 years and 83 years for women.


The statistics also show that Israeli Jews are in no rush to get married. Some 62% of men aged 25-29 are still single, while 42% of women in the same age group are single. Muslims in the same age group show a different trend with 39% of men still single and 15.5% of women still single. The reports authors noted that both cases show an increase in the rate of staying single in comparison with previous years.


Crowded in the center

Some 21% of Israeli Jews live in Tel Aviv and the surrounding suburbs, and 28% in the central region in general. On the other hand, about a fifth of the population lives in the northern region. However, only 10% of the Jewish population lives in the north. About 60% of the Arab population in Israel lives in the north.


In 2008, Israel had an average population density of 321 people per square kilometer. However, as the most populated, the Tel Aviv area has a population density of 7,134 people per square kilometer. Jerusalem and the central region also registered relatively high population densities with 1,394 and 1,368 people per square kilometer respectively.


The population density in the north registered at 278 people per square kilometer, while the population density in the south was a mere 74 people per square kilometer.


Bnei Barak is the most densely populated city with 21,000 people per square kilometer, followed by Bat Yam with 15,700 people per square kilometer.


Last year 11,700 people moved to the central region and 3,900 people moved to the West Bank. The rest of the districts registered a decrease in the number of residents, with 4,200 leaving Jerusalem and 5,700 leaving Tel Aviv.


The statistics published show that the average Israeli eats 3,522 calories a day.


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