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Belgium

The Belgian economy is an export-driven one. Important sectors in Belgium’s economy include trade; transport and accommodation/food­ services; industry; public administration; and professional/technical/scientific services. The economy can be divided between the Brussels, Wallonia and Flanders regions. The Brussels region has a greater focus on financial and administrative services than the other areas; given that many international organisations are based in Brussels, its workforce comprises people with relatively high qualifications and good linguistic skills. Wallonia and Flanders are more dependent on industry, and in particular the production of intermediate goods traded in the global market.

Employment in Belgium regained its pre-2008 financial crisis level in 2014, and is expected to continue to grow over the medium term to 2025. Most employment growth will be in non-marketed services, primarily the public sector, and most job opportunities will be for professionals.

Forecasts show that Belgium will experience an increase in demand for high- and low-skilled workers over the medium term, whilst demand for medium-skilled workers will concurrently decrease. Meanwhile, the relative share of Belgium’s labour force with high level qualifications is projected to increase by 2025, whilst the share of workers with medium qualifications will stay at around the same level and the share of the labour force with low or no qualifications will decrease in turn.

Belgium’s working-age population (15-64) is also projected to grow in this period, with labour market participation remaining at around the same level. Looking to the longer-term future, Belgium is expected to have a significantly lower old-age dependency ratio than the EU28 average.

Future employment growth (in %) in Belgium in 2015-2025 across sectors

Source:Cedefop
Indicator:Future employment growth

Projected changes in employment to 2025 (this indicator contains overall percentage change).

Key facts

SIZE OF EMPLOYMENT

Source:Eurostat
Indicator:Employment rate

The employment rate indicates the percentage of people in employment over the population aged 20-64.

 

In 2015 the employment rate in Belgium was 67.17% compared to 70.00% in EU

RECENT HISTORY

Source:Eurostat
Indicator:Employed population by sector

It shows the total number of employed population, of any age, broken down by sector.

During the period 2011-2015 the size of employment in Belgium changed by 0.94% compared to 2.07% in EU .

TOP PERFORMERS

Source:Eurostat
Indicator:Employed population by sector

It shows the total number of employed population, of any age, broken down by sector.

Sectors with the largest share in employment in Belgium in 2015 

  • Human health & social work activities 14.68%
  • Wholesale & retail trade 13.55%
  • Manufacturing 12.95% 
  • Education 9.28%
  • Public administration & defence 8.34% 

TOP PERFORMERS

Source:Eurostat
Indicator:Employed population by sector

It shows the total number of employed population, of any age, broken down by sector.

Occupations with the largest share in employment in Belgium in 2015:  

  • Teaching professionals 6.63%
  • Business & administration assoc. prof. 6.36%
  • Cleaners and helpers 5.81% 
  • Sales workers 5.44%
  • Building & related trades workers 4.86%

TOP PERFORMERS

Source:Cedefop
Indicator:Future employment growth

Projected changes in employment to 2025 (this indicator contains overall percentage change).

Sectors expected to have the strongest employment change over the period 2015-2025 in Belgium:

  • Water supply, sewerage & related activities 28.03%
  • Education 27.61%
  • Real estate, professional & related activities 27.12% 
  • Human health & social work activities 25.17% 
  • Administrative & support activities 18.11% 

LOOKING INTO THE FUTURE

Source:Cedefop
Indicator:Future employment needs

The additional number of people who will be required to work in an occupation given projected changes in employment and replacement demands. 

Occupations expected to have the largest numbers of job openings in Belgium over the period 2015-2025:

  • Business & administration assoc. prof. 148,751
  • Cleaners and helpers 131,446
  • Business & administration professionals 128,390
  • Assemblers 112,134
  • Legal, social & cultural professionals 109,021

Featured indicator

Related indicators

Employment share of occupations (%) in Belgium (2011-2015 comparison)

Source:Eurostat
Indicator:Employed population

Shows the total number of employed people of any age.

 

Education profile (%) of the working age population in Belgium (2011-2015 comparison)

Source:Eurostat
Indicator:Working-age population

Measures the total number of people of working age (i.e. 15-64).

 

Age profile (%) of the working age population in Belgium (2011-2015 comparison)

Source:Eurostat
Indicator:Working-age population

Measures the total number of people of working age (i.e. 15-64).

 

Future employment growth (% change) across occupations in Belgium compared to EU in 2015-2025

Source:Cedefop
Indicator:Future employment growth

Projected changes in employment to 2025 (this indicator contains overall percentage change).

Find out more about Belgium

05/12/2016 to 09/12/2016
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