67.3 percent of 20-64 year olds at work

By 2020 75% of Europeans aged 20 to 64 should have a job. This ambitious goal was set in the so-called Europe 2020 Strategy, which intends to transform the European Union into a sustainable economy with a wealth of job opportunities. In Belgium, 67.3% of people aged 20 to 64 were employed in the first half of 2011. This puts Belgium below the European average of 68.5%. Despite recent progress, especially employment rates of 55-64 year olds and of women remain low in Belgium.

Below are the other most important labour market results for the first half of 2011:

In the first half of 2011

  • almost 4,500,000 people residing in Belgium were employed and 332,000 were unemployed;
  • the employment rate of 15-64 year olds was 61.9%, the unemployment rate 6.9% and the activity rate 66.5%.

Comparing the first half of 2011 with the first half of 2010 shows that

  • the total employment rate increased by 42,000 units or 0.9%;
  • the number of ILO unemployed people decreased by 74,000 units or 18.3%;
  • the unemployment rate has decreased considerably, especially among women, young people and in the Walloon Region; the employment rate has increased slightly and the activity rate has decreased, except among people aged 50 and over.

These figures are shown in the most recent findings of the Labour Force Survey conducted by Statistics Belgium and by the 26 other EU member states. The survey assesses the key evolutions in terms of employment and unemployment according to international definitions, which are then used as a basis for a number of headline labour market indicators (e.g. employment and unemployment rate and activity rate).

To allow international comparison, the employment figures are calculated according to the definitions of the International Labour Office.

Press release type:Statistics - Labour market and Living conditions , Statistics press releases
date: 28 October 2011