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The FPB’s studies cover 11 main themes: Energy, Environmental economic accounts and analyses, International economy, Labour market, Macroeconomic forecasts and analyses, Public finances, Sectoral accounts and analyses, Social protection, demography and prospective studies, Structural studies, Sustainable development, Transport.

Social protection, demography and prospective studies

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The evolution of the risk of poverty in Belgium among the population under 60 years of age [04/06/2021]

The first part of this Working Paper discusses the main trends in Belgium regarding the risk of poverty, compared to those in the EU27 and neighbouring countries. A second part shows that the increase in the risk of poverty in the population under 60 years can be partly attributed to an increase in the concentration of the lack of paid work in certain households. Also, social security benefits and social assistance benefits are less and less successful in raising jobless households above the poverty threshold.

Regional child benefit reforms – An impact analysis with the microsimulation model EXPEDITION [18/05/2021]

This Working Paper puts the policy choices made in the regional child benefit reforms into perspective. Using the microsimulation model EXPEDITION, the expected direct effects of these reforms on child benefit expenditure and income distribution are mapped out. Special attention is paid to the effects on the simulated poverty risk of (families with) children, as this was a shared concern during the reforms in the different regions.

Economic Policy Committee’s Ageing Working Group – Belgium: Country Fiche 2020 [17/05/2021]

The Ageing Working Group was established in December 1999 by the Economic Policy Committee of the European Council ECOFIN. This working group is responsible for producing common budgetary projections on age-related public expenditure items. Each Member State calculates its long-term pension expenditure based on common assumptions.

This report presents the Belgian pension projection 2019-2070 published in the “2021 Ageing Report”. These results will be used in the context of the “Fiscal Sustainability Report” of the European Commission that assesses the mid-term and long-term fiscal situation of Member states.

It should be noted that the demographic and macroeconomic assumptions in the public pension expenditure projection of Belgium for the AWG are different from those retained in the national projection of the Study Committee on Ageing, as well as the scope of pension definition.

Belgium – excess mortality in 2020: 124,000 years of life lost [10/05/2021]

Excess mortality in 2020 is estimated at 16,000 deaths. These 16,000 people lost a combined 124,000 years of life, given their life expectancy, or an average of 7.7 years per person. These values seem to show that COVID-19 did not just cause the death of the most vulnerable people who, in the absence of the epidemic, would have died anyway in the next weeks or months.

2020-2070 2020-2070 demographic outlook - Reference and alternative scenarios [31/03/2021]

This publication presents the main results of the demographic outlook for Belgium: population, households, births, deaths, international migration and internal migration.  To show the sensitivity of the results to some assumptions, three alternative scenarios are analysed: one linked to the health crisis (Covid-19), another modifying the long-term mortality assumption and a last one adjusting the assumption on international emigration.

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The Federal Planning Bureau regularly draws up short-, medium- and long-term projections of social expenditure, in particular in the field of pensions and healthcare, within the overall framework of public finances (see “Financial evolution of social protection”).  It also studies the redistributive effects of pension and social assistance schemes for the elderly (see “Income distribution and poverty”). These projections are based in particular on the population projections that are also drawn up by the FPB (see “Demography”).

Since 2002, the financial and social impact of ageing has been presented in the annual report of the Study Committee on Ageing (see “Study Committee on Ageing”). At the European level, the FPB takes an active part in the Working Group on Ageing Populations and Sustainability (AWG) (see “Ageing Working Group”) set up by the Economic Policy Committee of the European Council (ecofin). Every three years, starting in 2003, this working group draws up a report on the long-term projections of social expenditure for all EU Member States.

The know-how of the Federal Planning Bureau also covers the study of the financial and social impact of social and economic policy measures or proposals for measures. In this capacity, it is part of the Knowledge Centre on Pensions (see “Knowledge Centre on Pensions”), set up in 2015 in order to provide technical assistance to the Academic Council, the National Pension Committee and the ministers in charge of pensions.

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