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    Economic growth expected to stagnate in 2020

    © Belga

    Belgium’s economy should grow by 1.3% in 2020, as it did last year, according to the latest forecast by Louvain University’s Institute of Economic and Social Research, IRES, published on Thursday.

    IRES also forecasts a net slowdown in the growth of purchasing power.

    Explaining the factors contributing to the timid economic growth, IRES notes that the global economic environment continues to be affected by trade tensions and Brexit’s economic fallout. Within Belgium itself, the level of household and business confidence is weak.

    According to the institute’s forecast, the increase in purchasing power is expected to slow down sharply in 2020, which will limit the contribution of domestic demand to growth.

    IRES also predicts a net increase in employment of 44,300 units and a 14,000-unit drop in the number of jobseekers this year.

    Consumer price inflation should amount to 1.4% in 2020, while public administrations should see their overall budget deficit increase to 2.3% of GDP.

    Oscar Schneider
    The Brussels Times