Photo Credit: Asher Schwartz

The Israeli population in Judea and Samaria grew in 2018, but at a slower pace, this despite announcements by the government that it had approved the construction of thousands of housing units in the region.

According to data first published in Israel Hayom, the Israeli population in Judea and Samaria grew by three percent in 2018, the 10th consecutive year in which a slowdown in the population growth is evident.

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The Yesha Council, the umbrella organization of the Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria, indicates that the reason for the consistent slowdown is the lack of construction by the government, which results in less migration to the area.

Construction plans have been approved, the Yesha Council noted, but only in a limited scope and after eight years in which there was a complete construction freeze.

Data presented by Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics in September shows that construction of 794 new apartments began in the second quarter of 2018, compared with only 279 in the first quarter.

In the first half of 2018, construction commenced on a total of 1,073 units, compared to only 870 in the first half of 2017.

Most recently, the government approved in late December the construction of 1,113 units in Judea and Samaria.

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