Global Jewish population numbers 15.2 million

Written by on September 5, 2021

Ahead of Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year, new statistics published by the Jewish Agency showed that there are 15.2 million Jews in the world, up from 15.1 million last year. 

Of those, 6.9 million Jews live in Israel, up by one hundred thousand from the previous year, with another 8.3 million living in the Jewish Diaspora around the world, meaning 45.3 percent of the world’s Jews live in the Jewish state, an increase of half a percent over the previous year.

The new data were provided by renowned Jewish demographer Professor Sergio Della Pergola of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and will be published in the American Jewish Year Book 2021.

The numbers include those who define themselves as Jews and who do not identify with another religion. 

When also including those who are eligible for Israeli citizenship under the Law of Return, meaning someone with a Jewish grandparent, the world total rises to 25.3 million people, of which 7.3 million are in Israel and 18 million live outside Israel.

 Hebrew University of Jerusalem's Prof. Sergio Della Pergola. (credit: Wikimedia Commons) Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Prof. Sergio Della Pergola. (credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Outside of Israel, the largest Jewish populations remain in the US with 6 million, followed by France with 446,000, Canada with 393,000, the UK with 292,000, Argentina with 175,000, Russia with 150,000, Germany with 118,000, and Australia also with 118,000. 

Countries with Jewish populations of 500 or fewer include United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Jamaica, Cuba, Cyprus, Malta, Bosnia, Albania, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, South Korea, Congo, Madagascar, and Syria, among others. 

“The year 5781 was very challenging, living in the shadow of a global epidemic, yet more than anything, it taught us the true meaning of mutual responsibility among the Jewish people,” said Acting Jewish Agency Chairman of the Executive and Chairman of the World Zionist Organization Yaakov Hagoel.

“Tens of thousands of new immigrants came to Israel with the help of The Jewish Agency despite the extreme difficulties in international travel, and thousands of more young Jews came to Israel on Masa volunteer and career development programs. The Jewish Agency will continue to be a solid bridge of solidarity and mutual responsibility between each community and between the State of Israel and global Jewry.”

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