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Gross domestic product per capita

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Gross domestic product per capita recovers further in 2023

(GDP) per capita for the Flemish Region in 2023 is estimated at 45,200 euro (PPS). In 2021, GDP per capita recovered from the COVID-19 crisis. That recovery continued in 2022 and 2023.

Commuting has a powerful impact on the GDP of the regions

In Belgium, the estimated GDP per capita in 2023 is highest in the Brussels-Capital Region (74,800 euro PPS), mainly due to the establishment of important administrative and business headquarters that give an additional boost to GDP. The Flemish Region reaches 45,200 euro PPS. GDP per capita is lowest in the Walloon Region (32,200 euro PPS).

In Belgium, many Flemish and Walloon residents commute to the Brussels-Capital Region. By doing so, they contribute to the GDP of the Brussels region. In contrast to many other countries, commuting in Belgium is much more common between the distinctive regions. This is because the Brussels-Capital Region is relatively small compared to other capital regions.

Attributing commuters’ labour to their place of residence gives a more realistic picture of GDP for better comparison with other countries. In the Flemish Region, GDP taking into account commuter movements is estimated to amount to 48,500 euro PPS in 2023, which is 7% higher than in the traditional calculation without commuter movements. GDP of the Walloon Region would even be 13% higher. These calculations come at the expense of the Brussels-Capital Region. The GDP per capita with a correction for commuting is 40% lower than in the traditional calculation.

Flemish GDP per capita higher than European Union average

In 2020, the GDP per capita (without a correction for commuter movements) in the Flemish Region was higher than the European Union average (EU27: 30,100 euro PPS). The top countries are Luxembourg (78,700 euro PPS) and Ireland (61,500 euro PPS). They perform very well because of the establishment of important administrative and business headquarters.

The Flemish Region’s GDP per capita is lower than that of the Netherlands and slightly lower than in Germany, but higher than that of France. Bulgaria is at the bottom of the ranking with 16,600 euro PPS, which is one fifth of the Luxembourg GDP. The year 2020 was an off-peak year because of the Covid-19 recession. The forecast for 2023 indicates an increase in GDP figures for all countries. There are no major shifts in the ranking.

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