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.
Mr Gurría presented the 2015 OECD Economic Survey of Belgium alongside Mr. Charles Michel, Prime Minister of Belgium.
Institutional investors (investment funds, insurance companies and pension funds) are major collectors of savings and suppliers of funds to financial markets. Their role as financial intermediaries and their impact on investment strategies have grown significantly over recent years along with deregulation and globalisation of financial markets.
This publication provides a unique set of statistics that reflect the level and structure of the financial assets of institutional investors in the OECD countries, and in the Russian Federation. Concepts and definitions are predominantly based on the System of National Accounts. Data are derived from national sources.
Data include outstanding amounts of financial assets such as currency and deposits, securities, loans, and shares. When relevant, they are further broken down according to maturity and residency. The publication covers investment funds, of which open-end companies and closed-end companies, as well as insurance corporations and autonomous pension funds. Indicators are presented as percentages of GDP allowing for international comparisons, and at country level, both in national currency and as percentages of total financial assets of the investor. Time series display available data for the last eight years.
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The tax burden in Belgium increased by 0.6 percentage points from 44.0% to 44.6% in 2013. The corresponding figure for the OECD average was an increase of 0.4 percentage points from 33.7% to 34.1%. The Belgian standard VAT rate is 21%, which is above the OECD average. The average VAT/GST standard rate in the OECD was 19.1% on 1 January 2014.
The number of foreigners in Belgium has been increasing since the year 2002. In 2012, 123 000 persons immigrated to Belgium – about 9 000 persons fewer than in 2011.
Country notes outlining regional variations in health, jobs, safety, environment, access to services, civic engagement, housing, education, income, and employment. These notes are from the OECD publication "How's Life in Your Region?".
Getting regions and cities 'right', adapting policies to the specificities of where people live and work, is vital to improving citizens’ well-being. View the country factsheets from the publication OECD Regional Outlook 2014.
The OECD has worked closely with both the European Commission and the Committee of Regions for many years and continues to do so to promote effective regional development. In this respect, the OECD signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Committee of the Regions, recognising prior and future work together.
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According to a new OECD report, variation in rates of health care activity across geographic areas in countries is a cause for concern. Wide variation suggests that whether or not you will receive a particular health service depends to a very great extent on where you live within a country.
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Tertiary attainment rates are above the average, but remain virtually unchanged since 2010. Although tertiary attainment has expanded in Belgium over the last decade, the rate of increase is slowing down. In fact, the attainment rate of the adult population (25-64 year-olds) has remained unchanged at 35% since 2010, only slightly above the OECD average of 33%.