Belgium’s gross national product (GNP) grew by 0.3% in the second quarter of the year, just as it did in the first, according to figures from the National Bank of Belgium (BNB). On an annual basis, economic growth is expected to be about 1.3% , according to the bank’s first flash estimate.
At the end of the first quarter (Q1), the growth rate on an annual basis was 1.5%.
In the second quarter, there was an increase of 1.3% in added value in construction and 0.2% in services compared to Q1, while industry shrank by -0.3%.
In Q1, the domestic employment rate was 0.4% higher than in the previous quarter. Compared to the corresponding period in 2017, it increased by 1.2%. The number of employees went up by 0.3% on a quarterly basis and 1.7% on an annual basis.
In June 2018, the BNB estimated that Belgium’s economy would grow by 1.5% this year and in 2019. This was a slight revision of the previous estimate, published in December 2017 – which had forecast an increase of 1.7%, equal to that of 2017- caused by a weaker first quarter.
The Brussels Times