The Belgian economy will increase by 0.5 percent in the first three months of the year compared to the previous three months. This is what the National Bank expected. The expected 0.5 percent growth comes after the economy contracted by 0.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2020.
The National Bank expects to resume household consumption in the first three months of the year. The central bank is talking of an incomplete recovery, given the many restrictions that remain in the fight against the Coronavirus. Additionally, people are still worried about contracting the virus and are still in the economy.
Confidence is increasing among entrepreneurs, which has led to a growth in business investment. Government and residential investments are also expected to continue growing in the first quarter.
Economic growth, in turn, declines due to exports. While in the fourth quarter of last year there was still a build-up of stocks from the UK as a result of Brexit, there was the opposite effect in the first quarter. The increase in domestic demand also led to an increase in imports.