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Jewish growth rate in the West Bank grows sharply

By Mason White 1:07 PM February 13, 2013
West Bank Jewish growth chart 

By: David Ross
The Jewish growth rate in the West Bank or Judea and Samaria grew sharply in 2012, according to press rpeorts in Israel.

By Aryeh Savir

Tazpit News Agency For

An examination of the statistics presented by the Minister of Interior and the authorities in Judea and Samaria indicates that there has been a 0.5% increase in the growth rate of the Jewish population in Judea and Samaria.

360,000 Israelis currently reside in Judea and Samaria, an increase of 4.7%, or 17,000 new residents since 2011. This is a 0.5% increase in the growth rate in comparison with the previous year.

The highest growth rate was registered in 2008, an increase of 5.6%. Since then the growth rate has declined yearly, the lowest numbers recorded in 2011 due to the government imposed building freeze in Judea and Samaria. This trend has now reversed.

The average growth rate in the region since 2005 (the Disengagement) stands at an average of 5% a year. This rate is about three times faster then the average in all of the State of Israel (1.9%), making Judea and Samaria’s population one of the fastest growing in Israel.

Another piece of data indicates that the remotest communities are the ones growing fastest. Maskiyot in the Jordan Valley grew by 30%. Har Gilo, grew by 20%. This may indicate that the motivation to live in Judea and Samaria is still ideological infused.

The average age of the population in Judea and Samaria is comparatively young, as indicated by the statistics presented by the elections committee.

51% of the population in Judea and Samaria are eligible voters, as opposed to 72% in the general Israeli population. This means 49% of the population in Judea and Samaria is under the age of 18, as opposed to only 28% of the population the rest of the country.

Avi Roeh, incoming chairman of the Yesha (Judea and Samaria) Council, stated: “Thank G-d, we are witness to an increase in number of students in the educational institutions, and especially in the grade schools. Our region is very attractive to young families and there is much demand for residents here.

We expect the government to acknowledge this necessity and develop all the communities and enlarge the schools in all of Judea and Samaria. This will further assist all the residents of Israel by making housing available and by bringing down the housing costs.”

Miri Maoz-Ovadia, spokesperson for the Binyamin Council, the largest council in Judea and Samaria, told Tazpit News Agency that the increase in the population growth rate is evidence of the prosperity of the region.

“This prosperity has been supported by a development of joint industrial areas, shopping centers open to all populations and an increase of tourism throughout the region. We hope that the development continues for the benefit of all residents living in Judea & Samaria.”