Page Title


To promote transparency and provide information, the Federal Planning Bureau regularly publishes the methods and results of its works. The publications are organised in different series, such as Outlooks, Working Papers and Planning Papers. Some reports can be consulted here, along with the Short Term Update newsletters that were published until 2015. You can search our publications by theme, publication type, author and year.

Documents (36)


  • Bon vent: setting sail for a climate neutral Belgian energy system – Future Belgian offshore wind unravelled 18/10/2021

    This paper examines what role offshore wind can play in helping Belgium achieve climate neutrality by 2050. The Belgian Exclusive Economic Zone is limited and its exploitation for energy purposes cannot be extended indefinitely. Therefore, this paper looks at the development of joint hybrid offshore wind projects that both provide renewable energy capacity and can serve as interconnectors linking different countries. Two scenarios are defined and studied. They differ in the level of ambition for these hybrid hubs and the necessary electricity supply for a de-fossilised Belgian economy.

    Working Papers - Working Paper 08-21  Publication(en),


  • Fuel for the future - More molecules or deep electrification of Belgium's energy system by 2050 21/10/2020

    In this report, the Federal Planning Bureau sets out to scrutinise the place hydrogen can occupy in the future Belgian energy system by 2050. In fact, this publication focuses on two divergent evolutions of energy (end) uses: on the one hand, a far-reaching electrification of the final energy consumption, on the other, a sustained and increased use of gas for transport, (industrial) heating and power generation. Different outcomes of the two future visions are reported such as the required investments in infrastructure (interconnections, electrolysers, storage).

    Working Papers - Working Paper 04-20  Publication(en),




  • Increasing interconnections: to build or not to build, that is (one of) the question(s) - Addendum to the cost-benefit analysis of adequate future power policy scenarios 28/09/2017

    At the request of the federal Minister of Energy, this report was carried out as a follow-up on the cost-benefit analysis published by the Federal Planning Bureau in February 2017. It constitutes an addendum to the February study in that some additional questions impacting the Belgian production park are scrutinized in detail. Four topics are dealt with. The first one concerns the impact of an increase in the Belgian cross-border transfer capacity by 2 GW on the functioning of the domestic flexible thermal park. The effect this will cause on the full load hours, the system marginal cost, CO2 emissions, the required volumes of natural gas and employment is studied. Second, the report assesses the cost of keeping currently existing gas-fired power plants operational and provides a comparison with the cost of building new flexible and reliable units. Third, the socio-economic impact of an increased risk of a black-out is scrutinized. The economic asymmetry this induces in relation to the costs and benefits of maintaining sufficient domestic capacity to comply with the legally defined Loss of Load (LOLE) criterion of 3h is documented. Finally, the question of premature closure of currently existing Belgian gas-fired power plants that have not yet reached the end of their operational lifetime is investigated by means of different indicators throughout the paper.

    Reports - CBA_201702  Publication(en),

  • Cost-benefit analysis of a selection of policy scenarios on an adequate future Belgian power system - Economic insights on different capacity portfolio and import scenarios 22/02/2017

    In this report, different capacity portfolio and import scenarios for Belgium are investigated. They are based on the reports published by the Belgian transmission system operator Elia in 2016. Four scenarios are scrutinized differing in their overall context (level of carbon price) and/or in the choice of the content of their structural block. A fifth scenario is added which constitutes a sensitivity analysis: in this scenario, a considerable amount of new natural gas-fired power plants on top of the structural block is built on the Belgian territory in order to study the impact of a fairly lower level of (net) imports and even explore the net export option. The five scenarios are compared in order to assess potential longterm strategic choices from a societal perspective.

    Reports - CBA_2017  Publication(en),


  • Drivers of wholesale electricity prices in a small, open economy - Some evidence from the nuclear restart in Belgium 12/10/2016

    In this paper, the impact of a nuclear downtime and subsequent restart on wholesale electricity prices on the Belgian power exchange is investigated by means of a dual methodology. First, publicly available market data is used to construct a stable statistical model that is deployed to examine the effect of nuclear power generation variations on market price outcomes. Quantifying this phenomenon, also called the merit-order effect, with the aid of econometric methods translates into an esti-mated price decrease of around 10 €/MWh for a nuclear capacity hike of 2.5 GW. The importance and impact of the openness of the Belgian market, that is, its strong reliance on cross-border energy exchanges is highlighted. Next to this empirical evidence, the optimisation tool Crystal Super Grid is used to assess the impact of the resumed availability of the nuclear reactors on several indicators characterising the Belgian and European power landscape. A positive effect on overall welfare, consumer surplus and CO2 emissions can be noticed. As regards prices, this analysis confirms the negative merit-order effect which is calculated to equal, on average over a year, 3.8 €/MWh. Nevertheless, temporary hourly excesses of 30 €/MWh can occur. The paper then describes the possible causes of divergence between the two approaches.

    Our findings have important policy implications as they demonstrate the need to take the downward influence of prolonged nuclear power generation on wholesale prices into consideration when revising the (timetable in the) nuclear phase-out law since it may have a delaying effect on the compulsory energy transition towards a low-carbon economy.

    Working Papers - Working Paper 09-16  Publication(en), Publication(fr), Publicatie(nl),



  • De prijs van elektriciteit en aardgas voor ondernemingen in België - Samenstelling, niveau en evolutie ten opzichte van de buurlanden 18/12/2014

    In 2012 ever growing prices of electricity and natural gas compelled the federal government to take measures to better control these prices, and thus improve Belgian competitiveness. This study explores the evolution of the prices of electricity and natural gas for enterprises in Belgium and three neighbouring countries. It is done for 2007 - 2014 and using energy price data from Eurostat and some other sources. The average electricity prices in Belgium have long been the second highest of the four countries, but the price increases were less strong than in Germany and France. That’s why today the prices are moderate to low, suggesting that the measures must have been effective. During the whole period since 2007, the prices of natural gas were relatively low. Still, attention should be paid to the prices, in particular those of electricity. This is of uttermost importance for energy-intensive manufacturing. All for countries grant discounts on energy levies, in some cases even on network tariffs. The position energy-intensive manufacturing in Belgium may therefore be less favourable than would be suggested by the average prices. Hence, it remains important to analyse energy prices for energy-intensive manufacturing.

    Working Papers - Working Paper 10-14  Publicatie(nl),

  • Belgische black-outs berekend - Een kwantitatieve evaluatie van stroompannes in België 10/03/2014

    Privatization, internal market, interconnections, greenhouse gas emission reductions, renewable energy targets… is it possible to reconcile these themes? And if so, will our lights stay on? This is a major concern of a number of players in the energy field, especially the Secretary of State for Energy since he is responsible for guaranteeing the security of supply. In times of increased electricity production by variable energy sources and of distorted investment signals, guaranteeing security of supply is not evident, since the absence of investments in sufficient reserve capacity and – worst case scenario – inadequacy of generation capacity may lead to soaring societal costs. This Working Paper focuses on the specific event that, in spite of all initiatives and mechanisms in place, things go wrong: a national black-out paralyzing the entire Belgian economy for 1 hour and its price tag are analysed.

    Working Papers - Working Paper 03-14  Publicatie(nl),


  • Walking the green mile in Employment - Employment projections for a green future 09/09/2013

    In this working paper, the employment effect triggered by a transition towards an all renewable energy system in Belgium by 2050 is scrutinized. The job impact is estimated up until the year 2030. Using a labour intensity methodology, net job gains are to be expected in each renewable trajectory for any given year. A distinction is made between construction, installation and manufacturing (CIM) and operations, maintenance and fuel processing (O&M) jobs, with the maximum amount of CIM jobs created over the reference scenario exceeding the amount of O&M jobs. This points to the fact that renewable energy sources tend to have a higher construction and installation component in employment than fossil fuels. These installation jobs, along with numerous other job types (e.g. monitoring, planning, certifying), are bound to be and remain domestic. A sensitivity analysis on the effect of applying a decreasing employment multiplier over time is modeled, accompanied by an enumeration of arguments pro and contra using this type of multiplier. All through the paper, a number of reflections are brought to the fore that may nuance the obtained figures and effects. In order for the jobs to materialize, targeted educations, preferably in close collaboration with industry, technical schooling and interest in science are crucial. Enabling policies and measures within a solid, transparent policy framework should accompany the whole process. In this regard, some policy domains and actions are described that could prove useful in tapping the vast job potential.

    Working Papers - Working Paper 07-13  Publication(en),

  • Analyse de l’adéquation de la production électrique en Belgique à l’horizon 2030 - Analyse basée sur les scénarios du projet d’EPE2 02/09/2013

    The analysis presented in this Working Paper is based on the scenarios of the draft Prospective Study for Electricity (PSE2) elaborated by the Directorate General for Energy of the FPS Economy, S.M.E.s, Self-employed and Energy in collaboration with the Federal Planning Bureau. The question examined in this analysis is whether the total generation capacity calculated in the PSE2 is compatible with the results of an adequacy assessment following ENTSO-E’s methodology (ENTSO-E is the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity).

    Working Papers - Working Paper 04-13  Publication(fr),


  • Towards 100% renewable energy in Belgium by 2050 12/12/2012

    In 2011, the four Belgian ministers (1 federal, 3 regional) in charge of energy commissioned a consortium consisting of three scientific partners, being the Federal Planning Bureau (FPB), the Institut de Conseil et d'Etudes en Développement Durable (ICEDD) and the Vlaams Instituut voor Technologisch Onderzoek (VITO) to analyse the feasibility as well as the impact of a Belgian energy system transformation towards 100% renewable energy by 2050. This target is not focalized on the sole power sector, it applies to all primary energy consumed on the Belgian territory.

    The main question that is raised in this publication is whether Belgium is able to fully function on renewable energy sources by 2050. Although the objective is highly ambitious, this study shows that it is (technically) possible. The switch to an all renewable system would require a total investment of 300 to 400 billion euro during the period up to 2050. At the same time, however, the transition offers an answer to many challenges.

    Other publications - ENERG_1201  Report(en),




  • Economic impact of the oil shock on the Belgian economy 13/03/2006

    This working paper assesses the impact of the oil price shock on the Belgian economy and tries to explain why the impact has been very limited when compared to the oil price shocks in the seventies.

    Articles - Working Paper 01-06  



  • STU 04-04 : Special Topic - Geographic market specialisation and export performance 17/12/2004

    The latest update of the FPB’s medium-term outlook for Belgium shows average GDP growth reaching 2.3% during the 2004-2009 period. This development can be largely accounted for by domestic demand, whereas the role of (net) exports is expected to be more limited. As in 2003, private consumption should evolve in quite a dynamic way during the projection period (1.9% on average), mainly as a result of an expansion of households’ disposable income. At the same time, gross fixed capital formation (and particularly business investment) should recover, with annual growth reaching 3%. The structural loss of export market share should be confirmed with exports increasing by 5.3% a year on average, compared with growth of 6.3% of our potential export markets.

    Inflation should remain slightly below 2% in the medium term, mainly thanks to limited wage increases and moderate rises in imported costs. Employment is expected to increase by about 32,000 jobs a year during the 2005-2009 period. This performance can be explained by several factors: a relatively favourable macroeconomic context, limited wage increases, a reduction in working time and various measures taken to promote employment. At the same time, the working population should rise considerably. As a consequence, despite the creation of many jobs, the fall in the unemployment rate should be very limited.

    The FPB’s October update of the medium term outlook for Belgium does not yet take into account the measures decided within the framework of the 2005 budget.

    Closed series - Short Term Update 04-04  Publication(en),

First page Previous page 1 of 2  Next page Last page
Please do not visit, its a trap for bots