Israel population passes 7.8 million mark

Jewish population makes up 75.3%, Arab sector reaches 20.6%; Israel relatively young, with 28% of population under 14 years old, compared to just 17% in most other Western countries.

April 24, 2012 17:56
2 minute read.
Haredi family

Haredi family 521. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)


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On eve of its 64th Independence Day, Israel’s population has surpassed 7.8 million, a growth of 1.8 percent or an additional 137,000 new citizens since this time last year, according to Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) figures released Tuesday.

According to the statistics, the state’s Jewish population makes up some 75.3% of the total population or 5,931,000 people, while the Arab population has reached 1,623,000 (20.6%) and those not identified with either group is at 327,000 (4.1%).

Since last year, 161,000 babies were born in the State of Israel while some 39,000 people passed away. Close to 19,500 new immigrants arrived over the past year, while up to 8,000 people left the country due to natural migration.

Other statistics show that in its 64th year, the majority of the Jewish population – 70% – are “Sabras,” or Israeli-born citizens and most are the second generation in Israel. This is compared to 1948, during Israel’s first year, when only 35% of people were born in the country.

The data shows that while in 1948 only one city, Tel Aviv, boasted 100,000 residents, in 2012 some 14 cities hold that many people. In addition, six cities – Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Rishon Lezion, Ashdod and Petah Tikva – have more than 200,000 residents.

According to a CBS report released on Rosh Hashana last September, Israel is still a fairly young nation with nearly 28% of its population under the age of 14, compared to 17% in most other Western countries.

Only 10% of the population is over the age of 65 in Israel, whereas the average is closer to 15% in other Western countries.

Regarding the growth of Jewish families in Israel, CBS figures show that the average Jewish family size has increased in recent years from 2.8 children per household in 2008 to 2.97 in 2010. In the Muslim community, the average number of children per mother was 3.75 last year, a fall from the previous two years where it had previously reached 3.97 children per household. Among Christian families, the average number of children was down to 2.11 in 2008.

Women in Israel continue to slightly outnumber men, especially in the more advanced years of life.

According to the data, there are roughly 979 men for every 1000 women. There are more men in the under-37 set but it is the imbalance in the over-75 age group that offsets this with some 673 men for every 1000 women.

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