Country report Belgium 2017

Country report

  • Belgium
  • Agriculture,
  • Automotive/Transport,

16th May 2017

In 2017 the number of Belgian business insolvencies will still be much higher than the levels seen before the start of the global credit crisis in 2008.

Belgium key indicators
Belgium industries performance forecast

The insolvency environment

High level of corporate insolvencies despite decreases in previous years

Belgian corporate insolvencies recorded yearly decreases in the years 2014-2016 after major increases in the wake of the 2008 credit crisis. In 2017 business failures are expected to decline only 2% after a 6% decrease in 2016. Construction and retail insolvencies are bucking the positive trend since H2 of 2016. With about 9,150 cases forecast this year, the number of insolvencies will still be higher than the levels seen before the start of the global credit crisis in 2008 (about 7,700 cases in 2007).

Belgian business insolvencies

Economic situation

Modest growth in 2017, but reforms underway

Belgium real GDP growth

Belgian economic growth decelerated to 1.3% in 2016, as private consumption was negatively affected by increases in indirect taxes and a temporary suspension of wage indexation imposed by the government in 2015. Economic growth is expected to remain modest in 2017 (up 1.4%), with household spending expected to remain restrained by on-going fiscal consolidation and wage restraining measures. That said, unemployment is expected to decrease further in 2017. Net exports should contribute positively to Belgium’s economic performance. As Belgium is an export-driven economy, its balance of trade should be structurally positive.

Belgium - government debt

The progress in structural labour market and pension reforms is starting to bear fruit, and should help to increase the resilience and international competiveness of the Belgian economy in the mid- and long-term.

A modest decrease in the yearly fiscal deficit is expected in 2017, supported by on-going austerity measures. Pension reform has significantly improved the long-term sustainability of public finances. However, public debt will remain one of the highest in the European Union in terms of the government debt-to-GDP ratio.

 

Disclaimer

The statements made herein are provided solely for general informational purposes and should not be relied upon for any purpose. Please refer to the actual policy or the relevant product or services agreement for the governing terms. Nothing herein should be construed to create any right, obligation or responsibility on the part of Atradius, including any obligation to conduct due diligence of buyers or on your behalf. If Atradius does conduct due diligence on any buyer it is for its own underwriting purposes and not for the benefit of the insured or any other person. Additionally, in no event shall Atradius and its related, affiliated and subsidiary companies be liable for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, or consequential damages arising out of the use of the statements made information herein.