Belgium Economic Outlook
May 5, 2020A preliminary estimate revealed the economy contracted at the sharpest quarterly pace on record in Q1 as Covid-19 took its toll. The downturn was seemingly broad-based: Confinement measures likely dealt a blow to private consumption, while fixed investment is set to have fallen markedly amid heightened uncertainties. Moreover, the worst of the crisis is slated to hit in Q2, as hinted by over two-decade low consumer and business sentiment in April and prolonged social distancing. As a result of the deterioration of the public finances prompted by the crisis, on 3 April Fitch Ratings downgraded the outlook on the countryâ€™s credit AA- rating from stable to negative. Meanwhile, on 24 April the government unveiled its strategy to gradually lift the lockdown in Mayâ€“June; however, the economy will likely operate well below full capacity for a longer period of time.
Belgium Economic GrowthThe economy is set to contract this year as a result of the health crisis. Fixed investment is likely to fall on depressed sentiment and the uncertain length of the pandemic, while downbeat external demand and falling tourism should weigh on exports. Meanwhile, the fiscal deficit is set to jump this year, putting pressure on politicians to curtail spending ahead. FocusEconomics analysts see the economy contracting 6.5% in 2020, which is down 3.3 percentage points from last monthâ€™s forecast. In 2021, they see it expanding 5.4%.
Belgium Economy Data
5 years of Belgium economic forecasts for more than 30 economic indicators.
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Belgium Economic News
April 29, 2020
The economy contracted 3.9% quarter-on-quarter in seasonally-adjusted terms in the first quarter, markedly contrasting Q4 2019’s revised 0.5% expansion (previously reported: +0.4% quarter-on-quarter seasonally-adjusted) and marking an all-time low, as the Covid-19 pandemic and the measures taken to curtail its spread hammered activity.
April 24, 2020
In February, industrial production growth accelerated to 2.4% on an annual- and seasonally-adjusted basis, from a revised 0.3% expansion in January (previously reported: +0.5% year-on-year s.a.).
April 24, 2020
The consumer confidence indicator produced by the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) fell from minus 9 in March to minus 26 in April, its lowest point in the survey’s history.
March 25, 2020
The consumer confidence indicator produced by the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) fell from minus 4 in February to minus 9 in March, its lowest point in five months.
March 25, 2020
In January, industrial production growth slumped to 0.5% on an annual- and seasonally-adjusted basis, from 10.4% in December, its weakest expansion in six months.