JERUSALEM (Aug. 21)
Last year’s growth rate of Jerusalem’s Jewish population was the lowest since the Six-Day War, the Central Bureau of Statistics reported today in its 1977 survey of urban growth.
The 2.4 percent growth cited in the capital’s Jewish population is only .1 percent under that of 1976 (2.5). However, it is way under the 3.7 percent target set by Premier Golda Meir’s government. Municipal officials claim the slowed growth is due principally to decreased immigration and the shortage of reasonably priced housing for young people.
Growth in Jerusalem’s Arab population slowed down as well during 1977 (from 4.4 percent in 1976 to 3.4 percent last year) apparently due to the economic boom in Amman, Jordan, which is drawing workers away from Jerusalem.
The proportion of Jewish residents in the capital has also fallen steadily since the Six-Day War. While in 1967, Jews constituted 74.2 percent of Jerusalem’s populace, in 1977 they numbered only 72.4 percent. However, on the whole, Jerusalem was the only large city which registered growth last year. In the 10 years since the Six-Day War, it has increased by 41 percent.