Statistics released before Rosh Hashana show majority of Israelis were happy before the pandemic hit.
By Paul Shindman, World Israel News
Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) released its annual report Wednesday showing key numbers as the country prepares for the Jewish Rosh Hashana New Year holiday that begins this weekend.
According to the Jewish calendar, the new year of 5771 begins this Friday evening, when Jews around the world celebrate the two-day Rosh Hashana holiday. Each year at Rosh Hashana the statistics for the previous year, in this case the year 5770, are released just beforehand.
According to the CBS, the population of Israel is 9,246,000 and is expected to reach 10 million at the end of 2024, 15 million at the end of 2048 and 20 million at the end of 2065. Israel’s current population is nearly triple the number of people who lived in the Jewish State when its last major war was fought in 1973.
The population is divided into 6.861 million Jewish residents (74 percent of the total population), 1.946 million Arab residents (21 percent) and approximately 459,000 other residents (5 percent).
In the past year, the population of Israel has grown by 150,000, giving a population growth rate of 1.6 percent. There were 170,000 babies born, 44,000 Israelis died, and some 25,000 immigrants arrived in the country of whom 5,000 were returning from living abroad and 20,000 were new immigrants.
The CBS also published data from the time before the coronavirus pandemic hit, when 88.8 percent of Israelis were satisfied with life and the economic situation. However, that was averaged between 92 percent of the Jewish population being happy while only 76.5 percent of Arab society felt that life for them was good.
The statistics also showed that in the past year, one in eight Israelis (about 13 percent) has considered moving abroad for at least five years.
Most Israelis (87.3 percent) are satisfied with the home in which they live and a similar figure (86 percent) are generally satisfied with the area they reside in, but only 41 percent are satisfied with public transportation in their area of residence.
Even before the corona crisis hit Israel, 11.5 percent of Israelis admitted to feeling poor in the past year. Here, too, the gap between Arabs and Jews is large. Among Jews, the feeling of poverty is about 7 percent; among Arab society the figure reaches about a third (30.9 percent).
Prior to the corona crisis, 4.1 million people were employed in Israel with the highest number of employees, about 491,000, in education. The second-largest employer is the health and welfare services, which employ about 439,000 people. The average work week per employee in Israel is 35.8 hours.