Productivity growth is the most important driver of long-term income growth, which in turn determines not only the evolution of living standards but also the scope for a government to pursue policy. The financial sustainability of government finances is significantly affected by the rate of income growth.
The current energy crisis shows how important it is for the government to retain this scope for policy not only from an economic perspective, but also to respond to the social and environmental challenges we face. In addition to responding to the short-term challenges, it is therefore important for policy to ensure that productivity growth, already weak before the crisis, is boosted rather than exacerbated in the longer term.Read more
The increase in productivity is an essential factor of economic growth and, consequently, constitutes an essential condition for improved living standards, even if it is not sufficient on its own. Increasing productivity and economic growth also allow for necessary political flexibility needed to achieve a more sustainable, inclusive and resilient economy, particularly amidst the backdrop of a crisis.
The impact of the COVID-19 crisis on productivity growth, estimated on the basis of preliminary data, has been positive. However, the slowdown caused by the economic and financial downturn in 2008 has yet to be turned around. Consequently, the National Productivity Board (NPB) stresses the importance of entrepreneurial dynamism and innovation to stimulate productivity growth. The challenge consists in aligning policies with these two levers to support economic growth post-COVID-19 and to ensure greater economic resilience. In 2021, the NPB also conducted an assessment of the Recovery and Resilience Plan and its impact on productivity growth.Read more
This report was closed on 21 October 2020. As such, neither the start of the second wave of the COVID-19 virus nor the new health and economic policies that followed were taken into account.Read more
This document constitutes the first report by the NPB. Having defined and explained the concepts of “competitiveness” and “productivity growth” in section 1, section 2 reviews Belgium’s performance in this area. Finally, section 3 gives an overview of the factors that have an impact on productivity growth.Read more