Israelis marrying, having children later in life

The population in Israel is considered a young population compared to other Western countries.

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September 22, 2014 23:29
4 minute read.
Orthodox family

An Orthodox family in Jerusalem’s Sacher Park. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)

 
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The population is aging, marrying and having children later in life, and moving away from the big cities. And there are 8,252,500 of them, according to a Central Bureau of Statistics report released on Monday.

There are 6.186 million Jewish citizens – 75 percent of the population – and the Arab-Israeli population stands at 1.709 million, or 20.7% of the country’s inhabitants. In most cases the report did not break the figures for Arabs into Muslim and Christian categories.

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The additional 4.3%, approximately 356,500 people, are non-Arab Christians or people of other religions, as well as those with no religious affiliation categorized as “other.”

On Sunday, the Interior Ministry’s Population and Immigration Authority released higher figures, which were for people registered with the ministry and included permanent and temporary residents in addition to citizens.

The population grew in 2013 by 1.9%, as the Jewish sector grew by 1.7%, the Arab sector by 2.2%, and the “other” group increased by 2.7%, according to the CBS.

The population in Israel is young compared to other Western countries. In 2013, 28.2% of the population was under the age of 14, while 10.6% of the population was aged 65 or older.

Still, the aging trend continued in 2013, when the median age stood at 29.6, compared to 27.6 in 2000. The report further indicated that the median age for men in 2013 was 28.6 while the median age for women was 30.7.

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The average life expectancy increased in 2013 to 80.3 for men, compared to 79.9 in 2011, and to 83.9 for women, compared to 83.6 two years earlier.

There are 982 men for every 1,000 women living in Israel.

Jewish men and women are marrying at a later age. In 2012, 63.3% of men and 45.8% of women aged 25-29 were single, compared to 54% of men and 33.3% of women who were single in 2000.

In contrast, among Muslim Israelis, in 2012, 45.5% of men and 18.8% of women aged 25-29 were single, compared to 35.7% of men and 23.2% of women in 2000.

At the end of 2013, approximately three-quarters of the Jews in Israel were Sabras – born in the country – and more than half were at least second- generation natives.

These figures indicate a drastic increase since the foundation of the state in 1948, when there were 806,000 Israelis, of whom 35% were native-born.

The report also indicated that some 34.8% of Israelis are of European- American origin, while 14% are from Africa and 10.7% are from Asia.

Some 40% of the total population, and roughly half of the Jewish population, live in the central region, while nearly 60% of Arab Israelis lives in the North.

In 2013, the population in the Jerusalem District grew by some 2.1%, to comprise 12.4% of the total, 11% of whom are Jewish and 18.9% Arab.

However the highest growth rate recorded was in Judea and Samaria, at some 4.4%. The population of the Tel Aviv metropolitan area grew by only 1% to comprise 16.4% of the total population.

Israelis are moving away from the big cities, those with more than 200,000 residents. Other than Petah Tikva, all these cities saw many of their residents leave. Jerusalem had 7,400 residents move away, Tel Aviv saw 1,900 residents leave, and Haifa had 1,300 residents move away.

Migration to rural areas, on the other hand, was positive, seeing an increase of some 6,800 residents.

In 2013, the city with over 200,000 residents with the highest growth rate was the aforementioned Petah Tikva, with an increase of 2.5% in residents, followed by Jerusalem at 1.8%, Rishon Lezion with a growth rate of 1.1%, and Tel Aviv with 1%. In contrast, rural communities grew by some 3%.

The nation’s population density steadily increased to reach 359.4 people per square kilometer in 2013, not including Judea and Samaria. In 2000, this figure stood at 288 individuals per sq.km.

Of the cities with more than 200,000 residents, the densest was Tel Aviv with 8,087 people per km. followed by Jerusalem with 6,643 people per kilometer. Other dense cities included Bnei Brak with 23,426 residents per sq.km. followed by Givatayim with 17,376 per sq.km., Bat Yam with 15,697 per sq.km. and Modi’in Illit with 12,309 per sq.km.

In 2012, 50,474 couples were married, of whom 75% were Jews and 21% were Muslim. In contrast, 13,685 couples divorced during the year; 81% were Jews and 13% were Muslim.

In 2013, 171,444 children were born – 0.3% more than in 2012. Of these children, 74% were born to Jewish mothers while 23% were born to Arab mothers.

The average age of a woman having her first child rose from 25.1 years old in 1994 to 27.5 years old in 2013. Furthermore, in 2013 the average woman in Israel had 3.03 children, compared to 3.05 children in 2012 and 3.8 children in the first half of the 1970s.

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