A major concern regarding the consequences of offshoring is about the labour market position of low‐skilled workers. This paper provides evidence for Belgium that offshoring has had a negative impact on the employment share of low‐skilled workers in the manufacturing sector between 1995 and 2007. The main contribution to the fall in the low‐skilled employment share came from materials offshoring to Central and Eastern Europe (21%), followed by business services offshoring (8%). In manufacturing industries with a higher ICT capital intensity the impact of offshoring is smaller. For market services industries, no robust conclusions regarding the impact of offshoring on low‐skilled employment could be drawn.
The Federal Planning Bureau presents its latest medium-term outlook (2012-2017) on 14 May 2012. The Economic Outlook 2012-2017 for Belgium is set against the background of budgetary consolidation and weak economic growth in Europe.
The 1996 Act establishes a preventive wage norm, based on the expected evolution of the labour costs in three reference countries, namely France, Germany and the Netherlands. It refers for those three countries to forecasts drawn up by the OECD. In its "Economic Outlook", the Federal Planning Bureau (FPB) analyses in the chapter on the labour market, particularly since the 2007 edition, the monitoring of the “wage norm”. This analysis revealed the existence of different concepts of wage costs. This note aims to clarify and explain these concepts as well as the wage developments in these different meanings. It also seeks to raise questions related to these concepts
In the national accounts labour inputs are collected by industry. Homogenising means transforming labour inputs by industry into labour inputs by product. This homogenisation is done using mathematical techniques. The paper compares the results for two wellknown techniques (product technology and industry technology) and discusses the effects of homogenisation on Belgian data for the years 2000 and 2005. Labour inputs are detailed by gender and education level. An additional distinction is made between employees and self-employed. The paper proposes a solution for the negatives problem that arises when applying the product technology model in the case of self-employed workers. It also assesses the plausibility of results by showing the effects of homogenising on wage costs and value added per head as well as on the ranking of industries by education level. The product and the industry technology model yield significantly different results, most particularly for the employment use of wholesale and retail trade. The results of the product technology model are judged to be most plausible
This study aims to analyse the effects of the decentralization level of collective wage bargaining on the wage level and the wage dispersion in Belgium. For this purpose, we have constructed a composite indicator of collective bargaining decentralization, based on variables that determine collective bargaining. Our results indicate the presence of a significant wage bonus and wider wage disparity in industries where collective bargaining is decentralized. Furthermore, we compare these results with those that use as an indicator of bargaining decentralization, the presence of collective agreements at company level, a commonly used indicator in the literature. We notice that this latter indicator seems to underestimate the degree of bargaining decentralization and thus also its effects on the wage structure. One can explains this result by the fact that in Belgium, besides firm collective agreements, the bargaining system also provides mechanisms that enable firms to distance themselves from collective agreements set at industry level.