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This country note from Going for Growth 2015 for Belgium identifies and assesses progress made on key reforms to boost long-term growth, improve competitiveness and productivity and create jobs.
Belgium is one of the few euro area countries where GDP has already surpassed pre-crisis levels. Also, general well-being is above the average of OECD countries. When looking at the various dimensions of well-being – economic, social or environmental – Belgium has a strong performance in almost all of them. Remarkably, despite the crisis, income inequality has remained relatively low compared to other OECD countries.
Belgium has returned to growth, halted competitiveness losses and improved its fiscal framework, but still faces a high public debt. Vulnerable groups, such as immigrants, struggle with low employment and poor housing.
The Belgian economy has returned to growth and continues scoring well on broader measures of well-being, but further reforms will be needed to secure fiscal sustainability while promoting employment and competitiveness, according to the latest OECD Economic Survey of Belgium 2015.
Mr Gurría presented the 2015 OECD Economic Survey of Belgium alongside Mr. Charles Michel, Prime Minister of Belgium.
Belgium has a good record in delivering accessible care, but adaptation to population ageing will be
complicated by the fragmentation of responsibilities in the healthcare system and a strong reliance on
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The global crisis led to a smaller increase in the unemployment rate than in most other OECD countries as employment has been sustained through intensive use of reduced working time schemes.
The road ahead will not be easy, though: financial market concerns about sovereign debt are extending to a growing number of countries and now they threaten to include Belgium. Thus fiscal sustainability and higher growth are the backbone of our main recommendations in this Survey. With a public debt at 97% of GDP, a renewed and sustained effort to prefund ageing costs is needed, including revisiting intergovernmental prefunding