The State of Israel by numbers: 73 facts that tell our story

On the fifth day of Iyar – 15 May 1948 – The State of Israel is established

After two thousand years of exile, the Jewish people have an independent State


Israel is one year old. The War of Independence ends. Approximately 6,000 men and women are killed in the war – almost 1% of the country’s population of 650,000.

1 of every 6 Jews lives in Jerusalem. Today 1 of every 16.

During the next 12 years approximately 1,000,000 immigrants arrive in the country: 439,000 from Europe, 237,000 from Africa, 275,000 from Asia.

Most of the immigrants arrive at one of 129 transit camps. Others arrive at one of the 207 kibbutzim.

24 passengers take the first El Al commercial flight to Paris.

In 2019 there are more than 9.2 million trips abroad by Israelis

David Ben-Gurion is elected the first prime minister of Israel.

Only 12 among the 120 Knesset members are women. Golda Meir is the only female government minister until 1974.


36 immigrant families establish Dimona. 400 families establish Ofakim.

Only 40% of the country’s residents own a refrigerator.

The average Israeli consumes 88 liters of milk a year. Today over 220 liters a year.

The first pier is built at the port of Eilat. Today there are 5 international ports, 4 national ports and 8 marinas.

50,000 tourists visit Israel. In 2019 more than 4.6 Million tourists visit the country.

The first Uzi submachine gun is produced. To date more than 10,000,000 have been manufactured.

In 1972 the first fighter aircraft produced in Israel, Nesher, is introduced.

1988 saw the launch of Ofek 1, the first satellite made in Israel.

Today the IDF has 700 aircrafts and 500,000 reserve soldiers.


1.3 million tickets are sold for the film Sallah Shabati, which is seen by 1 of every 2 Israelis.

In 2018 1 of every 2 households watches Israel win the Eurovision Song Contest for the fourth time.

130 kilometers – the length of the national water carrier. Today it streams more than 1,700,000,000 cubic meters of water.

The Pope visits Israel for the first time. The visit duration: 11 hours.

The Israel National Football Team wins the AFC Asian Cup. In 1974, Israel is excluded from the AFC games due to political pressure. Before the ban, Israel loses in the final to Iran.

63,544 babies are born, a third of the number born in 2017.

The first show of the iconic comedy trio HaGashash HaHiver is staged. The trio perform together for 37 years.


An apartment costs the equivalent of approximately 49 monthly salaries – compared to 125 in 2013.

4 years after Israel conquers the Golan Heights, Judea and Samaria and Sinai in the Six Day War – The first settlement in Sinai is founded: Moshav Sadot.

16 Sinai settlements are evacuated in 1982 following the peace agreement with Egypt.

25 settlements are evacuated in Gush Katif and Samaria as part of the 2005 Israeli Disengagement plan.

623 people are killed in car accidents, more than double than in 2012. 300,000 motor vehicles rode Israel’s roads.

There are currently more than 3,500,000 motor vehicles (one for every 2.5 people).

For the first time, the national football league winner is not from the Dan Metropolitan: Maccabi Netanya. Hapoel Beersheba wins its first championship in 1976; Maccabi Haifa in 1984; Beitar Jerusalem in 1987; and Kiryat Shmona in 2012.

7,000 people attend the Black Panthers demonstration in Jerusalem. 500,000 people participate in the large social justice protest demonstration of 2011.


78 points give Maccabi Tel Aviv Israel’s first EuroLeague championship in basketball.

Mickey Berkovich takes part in the torch lighting ceremony at the 10th Maccabiah Games, in which 2,700 athletes participate – compared with 390 in the first Maccabiah and over 10,000 in the 20th.

29 years of Mapai (Workers’ party) government end: the Likud wins the election – Menachem Begin is Israel’s sixth prime minister.

4 years after the Yom Kippur War, which cost the lives of 2,569 Israelis, Egypt’s president Anwar Saadat arrives on a historical 3-day visit. Egypt is the first Arab country to sign a peace agreement with Israel.

In 1994 Jordan and Israel sign a peace accord.

In 2020 a normalization agreement is signed between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.

The Aliya from Ethiopia begins. Over the years more than 90,000 Ethiopians arrive in Israel.

Katzrin is established – the first city in the Golan Heights.

Miriam Ben-Porat is the first woman appointed supreme court judge.


3 years after the outbreak of the Lebanon War, the IDF retreats from to the security strip. 675 soldiers are killed in the war. Another 244 soldiers are killed by the time IDF leaves Lebanon in 2000.

165 soldiers and civilians are killed in the 2006 Lebanon War.

3 IDF war hostages are released in exchange for 1,150 Palestinian prisoners and detainees in accordance with the Jibril Agreement.

1,027 prisoners are released in exchange for Gilad Shalit in 2011.

140,000 copies of David Broza’s album Haisha She’iti (The Woman by My Side) are sold. In 2002 80,000 copies of Sarit Hadad’s album Yalda shel Ahava (Girl of Love) sell in two days.

445% inflation – an economic emergency plan is implemented, and the currency is changed: 1 New Israeli Shekel = 1,000 Old Shekels.

5 million dollars – the scope of Israeli software export. 15 billion dollars – the price Intel paid for Mobileye in 2017.

Israel has around 90,000 millionaires, yet 1 in every 3 children lives under the poverty threshold.


3 times the Ayalon highway floods due to the heaviest rains since 1870. The Kinneret water level reaches a new high.

2 first Olympic medals for Israel – in Judo. In 2004 the first Olympic gold medal is won by the windsurfer Gal Fridman.

230 caravan sites are set up to house immigrants arrive from the Soviet Union – a million will arrive during the following decade.

The construction of Highway 6 gets underway – it measures 290 km.

The length of the Israel Trail (Shvil Israel) is 1,030 km.

The Labor party wins the election. Yitzhak Rabin is elected prime minister.

A year later Israel and the Palestinians begin negotiations to end the conflict – which come to a halt in October 2000 with the outbreak of the Second Intifada.

On 4.11.1995 Rabin is assassinated by Yigal Amir.


62 academic institutions award more than 53,000 Israelis degrees. In 1948 207 people are awarded academic degrees by 2 academic institutions.

After 17,272 days as a Knesset member – over 47 years – Shimon Peres is elected the ninth President of Israel.

Teddy Kollek, mayor of Jerusalem for 28 years, dies. 43 years Avraham Krinitzi served as mayor of Ramat Gan.

72,271 students study in Yeshiva academies as part of the Torato Umanuto (Torah is his craft) agreement – compared with 400 in 1948.

248 recreation and cookbooks are published. In 1948 only one cookbook is published.


Approximately 400 poetry books are published each year compared with 31 in 1948.

There are over 12,000 factories in Israel and 150 museums.

More than 50,000 couples get married in Israel each year (and about 15,000 divorce).

One in every 225 Israelis is a taxi driver.

1 in every 325 Israelis is a doctor.

One in every 125 Israelis is a farmer.

1 in every 137 Israelis is a lawyer.

1 in every 141 Israelis is a nurse.

1 in every 79 Israelis is an active athlete.

1 in every 57 Israelis is a teacher.

89% of Israelis claim to be content with their lives.

All data and images are from “State of Israel by numbers”  Video display on 2nd floor of ANU-Museum of the Jewish People

Director: Yaniv Primak

Production: Shula Spiegel & Dana Cohen Productions

Hagay Kraus