No less than 22,988 new immigrants, as well as returning residents, moved to Israel in the past Jewish year (5773) according to the Immigrant Absorption Ministry. In comparison only 16,500 new immigrants were absorbed in 2012, the ministry said.

The statistics, released ahead of the upcoming Jewish New Year, show that 7,618 of the immigrants arrived from Eastern Europe, amounting to the largest total of immigrants from a single area.

“The Ministry of Immigrant Absorption has put forward as a target to increase as much as possible the number of new and returning immigrants,” said Immigrant Absorption Minister Sofa Landver.