Statistical information Israel 1996Israel

Map of Israel | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
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Israel in the World
Israel in the World


Israel - Introduction 1996
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Background: The territories occupied by Israel since the 1967 war are not included in the data below. In keeping with the framework established at the Madrid Conference in October 1991, bilateral negotiations are being conducted between Israel and Palestinian representatives, Syria, and Jordan to determine the final status of the occupied territories. On 25 April 1982, Israel withdrew from the Sinai pursuant to the 1979 Israel-Egypt Peace treaty. Outstanding territorial and other disputes with Jordan were resolved in the 26 October 1994 Israel-Jordan Treaty of Peace.

Israel - Geography 1996
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Location: Middle East, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Egypt and Lebanon

Geographic coordinates

Map reference

Total: 20,770 km²
Land: 20,330 km²
Comparative: slightly larger than New Jersey

Land boundaries: Total 1,006 km, Egypt 255 km, Gaza Strip 51 km, Jordan 238 km, Lebanon 79 km, Syria 76 km, West Bank 307 km

Coastline: 273 km

Maritime claims
Continental shelf: to depth of exploitation
Territorial sea: 12 nm

Climate: Temperate; hot and dry in southern and eastern desert areas

Terrain: Negev desert in the south; low coastal plain; central mountains; Jordan Rift Valley

Extremes lowest point: Dead Sea -408 m
Extremes highest point: Har Meron 1,208 m

Natural resources:
Small amounts of natural gas and crude oil

Land use

Land use
Arable land: 17%
Permanent crops: 5%
Permanent pastures: 40%
Forests and woodland: 6%
Other: 32%

Irrigated land: 2,140 km² (1989)

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards


Israel - People 1996
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5,421,995 (July 1996 est.)
5,433,134 (July 1995 est.)

Includes 127,600 Israeli settlers in the West Bank, 14,800 in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, 5,000 in the Gaza Strip, and 153,700 in East Jerusalem (August 1995 est.)
122,000 West Bank, 14,500 Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, 4,800 Gaza Strip, 149,000 East Jerusalem (August 1994 est.)

Growth rate:
2.11% (1996 est.)
1.4% (1995 est.)

Noun: Israeli(s)
Adjective: Israeli

Ethnic groups:
Jewish 82% (Israel born 50%
Europe/Americas/Oceania born 20%
Africa born 7%
Asia born 5%)
Non-Jewish 18% (mostly Arab) (1993 est.)

Languages: Hebrew (official), Arabic used officially for Arab minority, English most commonly used foreign language

Judaism 82%
Islam 14% (mostly Sunni Muslim), Christian 2%
Druze and other 2%

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure
0-14 years: 29% (male 793,712; female 756,735)
15-64 years: 62% (male 1,670,082; female 1,669,481)
65 years and over: 9% (male 230,082; female 301,903) (July 1996 est.)

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate:
2.11% (1996 est.)
1.4% (1995 est.)

Birth rate:
20.31 births/1000 population (1996 est.)
20.39 births/1000 population (1995 est.)

Death rate:
6.26 deaths/1000 population (1996 est.)
6.38 deaths/1000 population (1995 est.)

Net migration rate:
7.03 migrant(s)/1000 population (1996 est.)
0 migrant(s)/1000 population (1995 est.)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: limited arable land: and natural fresh water resources pose serious constraints; desertification; air pollution from industrial and vehicle emissions; groundwater pollution from industrial and domestic waste, chemical fertilizers, and pesticides
Current issues Natural hazards: sandstorms may occur during spring and summer
International agreements: party to_Biodiversity, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution; signed, but not ratified_Climate Change, Desertification, Marine Life Conservation
International agreements note:
There are 202 Israeli settlements and civilian land use sites in the West Bank, 42 in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, 24 in the Gaza Strip, and 26 in East Jerusalem (August 1995 est.)
199 (August 1994 est.)

Air pollutants

Sex ratio
At birth: 1.05 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.76 male(s)/female
All ages:
0.99 male(s)/female (1996 est.) Infant Mortality Rate:8.5 deaths/1000 live births (1996 est.)
8.4 deaths/1000 live births (1995 est.)

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate

Life expectancy at birth
Total population: 78.01 years (1996 est.); 78.14 years (1995 est.)
Male: 76.16 years (1996 est.); 76 years (1995 est.)
Female: 79.96 years (1996 est.); 80.39 years (1995 est.)

Total fertility rate:
2.77 children born/woman (1996 est.)
2.81 children born/woman (1995 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Definition: age 15 and over that can read and write (1992)
Total population: 95%
Male: 97%
Female: 93%

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Israel - Government 1996
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Country name
Conventional long form: State of Israel
Conventional short form: Israel
Local long form: Medinat Yisra'el
Local short form: Yisra'el

Government type: Republic

Capital: Jerusalem
Note: Israel proclaimed Jerusalem its capital in 1950, but nearly all other countries, do not recognize this status

Administrative divisions: 6 districts (mehozot, singular_mehoz; Central, Haifa, Jerusalem, Northern, Southern, Tel Aviv

Dependent areas

Independence: 14 May 1948 (from League of Nations mandate under British administration)

National holiday: Independence Day, 14 May 1948 (Israel declared independence on 14 May 1948, but the Jewish calendar is lunar and the holiday may occur in April or May)

Constitution: No formal constitution; some of the functions of a constitution are filled by the Declaration of Establishment (1948), the basic laws of the parliament (Knesset), and the Israeli citizenship law

Legal system: Mixture of English common law, British Mandate regulations, and, in personal matters, Jewish, Christian, and Muslim legal systems; in December 1985, Israel informed the UN Secretariat that it would no longer accept compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal

Executive branch
Chief of state: President Ezer WEIZMAN (since 13 May 1993) election last held 24 March 1993 (next to be held NA March 1999); results_Ezer WEIZMAN elected by Knesset
Head of government: Prime Minister Binyamin NETANYAHU (since 29 May 1996)
15 November 1995 29 May 1996: Prime Minister Shimon PERES was appointed by the president following the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak RABIN July 1992_November 1995:Prime Minister Yitzhak RABIN
Cabinet: Cabinet; selected from and approved by the Knesset

Legislative branch: Unicameral
Parliament Knesset: elections last held 29 May 1996 (next to be held by NA 2000); results_percent of vote by party NA; seats_(120 total)

Judicial branch: Supreme Court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation: AG (observer), BSEC (observer), CCC, CE (observer), CERN (observer), EBRD, ECE, FAO, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICFTU, IDA, IFAD, IFC, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM, ISO, ITU, OAS (observer), OSCE (partner), PCA, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO, WTrO

Diplomatic representation

Flag descriptionflag of Israel: White with a blue hexagram (six-pointed linear star) known as the Magen David (Shield of David) centered between two equal horizontal blue bands near the top and bottom edges of the flag

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Israel - Economy 1996
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Economy overview: Israel has a market economy with substantial government participation. It depends on imports of crude oil, grains, raw materials, and military equipment. Despite limited natural resources, Israel has intensively developed its agricultural and industrial sectors over the past 20 years. Industry employs about 22% of Israeli workers, agriculture, forestry, and fishing 3.5%, and services the rest. Israel is largely self-sufficient in food production except for grains. Diamonds, high-technology equipment, and agricultural products (fruits and vegetables) are leading exports. Israel usually posts current account deficits, which are covered by large transfer payments from abroad and by foreign loans. Roughly half of the government's external debt is owed to the US, which is its major source of economic and military aid. To earn needed foreign exchange, Israel has been targeting high-technology niches in international markets, such as medical scanning equipment. The influx of Jewish immigrants from the former USSR, which topped 525,000 during the period 1990-95, increased unemployment, intensified housing problems, and strained the government budget. At the same time, the immigrants bring to the economy valuable scientific and professional expertise.

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate:
7.1% (1995 est.)
6.8% (1994 est.)

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: Citrus and other fruits, vegetables, cotton; beef, poultry, dairy products

Food processing
Diamond cutting and polishing
Textiles and apparel
Metal products
Military equipment
Transport equipment
Electrical equipment
Miscellaneous machinery
Potash mining
High-technology electronics

Industrial production growth rate: Growth rate 10.3% (1995 est.), 8% (1994 est.), accounts for 22% of GDP

Labor force: 1.9 million (1992)
By occupation public services: 29.3%
By occupation industry: 22.1%
By occupation commerce: 13.9%
By occupation finance and business: 10.4%
By occupation personal and other services: 7.4%
By occupation construction: 6.5%
By occupation storage and communications: 6.3%
By occupation agriculture forestry and fishing: 3.5%
By occupation other: 0.6% (1992)
Labor force

Unemployment rate:
6.3% (1995 est.)
7.5% (1994 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Revenues: $41 billion (1996); $42.3 billion (FY92/93 est.)
Expenditures: $53 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (1996); $45.4 billion, including capital expenditures of $11.1 billion (FY92/93)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: Calendar year (since 1 January 1992)

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

total value. $28.4 billion (f.o.b., 1995 est.)
$16.2 billion (f.o.b., 1994 est.)

Machinery and equipment
Cut diamonds
Textiles and apparel
Agricultural products


Total value:
$40.1 billion (c.i.f., 1995 est.)
$22.5 billion (c.i.f., 1994 est.)

Military equipment
Investment goods
Rough diamonds
Other productive inputs
Consumer goods


Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external:
$18.5 billion (1995 est.)
$25.9 billion (November 1994 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: New Israeli shekels (NIS) per US$1_3.1295 (January 1996), 3.0113 (1995), 3.0111 (1994), 2.8301 (1993), 2.4591 (1992), 2.2791 (1991), 2.0162 (1990), 1.9164 (1989)

Israel - Energy 1996
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 23 billion kWh

Electricity consumption
Per capita: 4,290 kWh (1993)

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Israel - Communication 1996
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system: 2.425 million telephones (1990 est.); most highly developed in the Middle East although not the largest
Local: NA
Intercity: good system of coaxial cable and microwave radio relay
International: 3 submarine cables; 3 INTELSAT (2 Atlantic Ocean and 1 Indian Ocean) earth stations

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Israel - Military 1996
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Military expenditures
Dollar figure: $9.2 billion, about 9.8% of GDP (1996; $6.5 billion, about 10% of GDP (1995)

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Israel - Transportation 1996
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

Airports: 50
With paved runways over 3047 m: 2
With paved runways 2438 to 3047 m: 6
With paved runways 15-24 to 2437 m: 7
With paved runways 914 to 1523 m: 3 (1995 est.)
With paved runways under 914 m: 22
With paved runways with unpaved runways 1 524 to 2 437 m: 2

Airports with paved runways
Over 3047 m: 2
2438 to 3047 m: 6
15-24 to 2437 m: 7
914 to 1523 m: 3 (1995 est.)
Under 914 m: 22
With unpaved runways 1 524 to 2 437 m: 2

Airports with unpaved runways

Heliports: 2 (1995 est.)

Pipelines: Crude oil 708 km; petroleum products 290 km; natural gas 89 km




Merchant marine
Total: 28 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 577,747 GRT/701,459 DWT
Ships by type: cargo 5, container 20, refrigerated cargo 2, roll-on/roll-off cargo 1 (1995 est.)

Ports and terminals

Israel - Transnational issues 1996
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs: Increasingly concerned about cocaine and heroin abuse and trafficking

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