A report released Tuesday by the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) revealed a slight rise in the number of immigrants coming from English-speaking countries, with the highest percentage arriving from North America.
According to the report, 11.2% of the new olim [immigrants] in 2006 came from North America, an increase over the previous year, in which they comprised 9.7% of new immigrants. CBS statistics indicated that a total of 2,157 North American Jews immigrated in 2006, as opposed to 2,045 the year before.
A similar trend was seen from Great Britain whose Jews comprised 3.2% of aliyah in 2006, an increase of 1.3% over 2005. In 2006, 595 British Jews came to live in Israel, as compared to 383 in 2005.
From Ethiopia as well, more Jews came home to Israel in 2006. The new olim, numbering 3,595, comprised 18.7% of all immigrants, as opposed to 3,571 in 2005.
Jewish and non-Jewish immigrants from the former Soviet Union dropped in numbers by 3.9% as compared to 2005. The former USSR nationals, who still comprise the lion’s share of total immigration to the Jewish State – 66.7 percent in 2006, included people from Asian, Eastern European, Russian and Ukrainian countries. Of those, 32.1% came from Eastern Europe.
Taking into account the mixed Jewish and non-Jewish immigration from the former Soviet Union, the total immigration figures dropped to its lowest levels since 1988, with less than 20,000 people choosing to live in the Jewish State, a drop of nine percent over 2005.