Labour productivity

  • Labour productivity will recover in 2021

    In 2021, labour productivity in the Flemish Region is estimated at 87,500 euro purchasing power standard (PPS). Labour productivity is the ratio of gross domestic product (GDP) to employment in a country or region.
    Labour productivity has risen almost continuously in recent years, but 2020 is a notable exception. The COVID-19 crisis had an important impact on economic activity. In 2021, labour productivity is expected to be approximately at the level of before the COVID-19 crisis.

  • Commuting has little influence on labour productivity

    Commuting, i.e. workers living in one region and working in another, has little impact on labour productivity. If commuters from the Flemish Region were included in the calculation, labour productivity in the Flemish Region would be 2% higher. For the Walloon Region, the increase would be 4%. On the other hand, there would be a 1% decrease in labour productivity in the Brussels-Capital Region.

  • Labour productivity of Flemish Region high compared to EU

    Within Belgium, the Brussels-Capital Region is estimated to have the highest labour productivity in 201, which is due to the typical activities of a capital region that generate a lot of gross added value. The Walloon Region will have the lowest labour productivity, but this is still above the average of the European Union (EU27).


    The estimated labour productivity in the Flemish Region is high compared to other European countries. Among the other EU countries, only Ireland and Luxembourg perform better than the Flemish Region. The 3 neighbouring countries will have lower labour productivity. There are considerable differences among the EU countries. In Ireland, for example, labour productivity will be 4.5 times higher than in Bulgaria, which is at the bottom of the league.


Federal Planning Bureau, Statistics Flanders, IWEPS, BISA: Regional economic outlook  
Institute of National Accounts (INR): Regional accounts 
European Commission: Ameco 


Labour productivity: a measure of the efficiency of the labour used. It represents the ratio of gross domestic product (GDP) to employment in a given country or region.   
Gross domestic product (GDP): the monetary value of the final goods and services produced in a country or region over 1 year's time.
Purchasing power standard: monetary amounts are expressed in euro purchasing power standard (PPS) to facilitate international comparisons. An adjustment is made for the existing price differences for the same goods and services between countries.

Publication date

22 October 2021

Next update

August 2022

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