Retail sales rise in EU, fall in Belgium

Monday, 05 March 2018 20:30
Retail sales rise in EU, fall in Belgium © Belga
Retail sales in Belgium dipped by 0.2% in January, on an annualised basis, after falling by 2.9% in December 2017, according to the European Union (EU) statistical office, Eurostat.
In the EU as a whole, retail sales increased by 2.7%, while the increase in the euro zone was 2.3%.

The only other EU country whose retail sales contracted was Estonia (-0.9%).

The shrinking retail sales in Belgium are attributable to the increasing success of foreign webshops, says Mien Gillis, trade specialist at the Flemish employers association, Unizo. Belgians make more than half of their online purchases from foreign companies. In this regard, the composition of the three most popular webshops in Belgium speaks for itself. They are Amazon, Coolblue and, three foreign sites.

Unizo feels these Internet gateways have an adverse effect on Belgium’s economy, mainly from the point of view of jobs and revenue generated by VAT. It is therefore calling for efforts to raise consumer awareness on the impact their consumption habits. “But there must also be a domestic supply and it must be noted that there is no Belgian,” Ms. Gillis said.

Maria Novak
The Brussels Times
Google Plus

More Stories

The UK can decide on its own to revoke Brexit

The UK can decide on its own to revoke Brexit

The United Kingdom can decide on its own to reverse its withdrawal from the European Union, without needing the approval of the other member States, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) said in a ruling handed down on Monday.

Belgium judged “medium-performing” on climate

Belgium judged “medium-performing” on climate

Belgium is still a “medium-performing” country in the fight against climate change even if it has moved up by one point, according to the Climate Change Performance Index 2019, compiled by environmental NGOs and published on Monday on the occasion of COP24 in Katowice, Poland.

Protestors demand the right to repair their goods

About 30 persons demonstrated on Monday outside the Albert Borschette Conference Centre in Brussels’ European Quarter as representatives of EU member States met for a first series of votes on proposals to oblige companies to manufacture household appliances that are easy to repair and more durable.