The Ministry of Immigration announced the latest immigration figures on Wednesday. Jewish immigration to Israel increased by 30% in 2021 despite COVID-related travel restrictions the report said.
Immigration Minister Pnina Tamano-Shata reported that around 27,000 Jewish immigrants came to Israel in 2021, a notable increase compared to the 21,000 in 2020.
4,000 Jews came from the United States, a gratifying proportion given this is the largest number of US immigrants since 1973. In France, 3,500 packed their suitcases, an increase of 40% compared to 2020. Around 7,500 Jews immigrated from Russia, an increase of 10% compared to 2020, and around 3,000 came from Ukraine, an increase of 5% compared to the previous year.
Despite the increase in the number of immigrants compared to 2020, the numbers remain below those of the years before the COVID pandemic. Since the pandemic started in late 2019, Israel has put in place strict regulations restricting travel to and from countries considered high-risk regions.
The pandemic restrictions have temporarily prevented the families of many immigrants from entering the country to the chagrin of those who celebrate births, weddings, and other family affairs.