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Hospitality, telecoms and culture contribute to Belgian inflation

15:57 08/03/2017

Not only government measures, but also hospitality, telecommunications and cultural industries contribute to a rise in inflation in Belgium, points out economy minister Kris Peeters in De Standaard. The minister is therefore calling for resolute action.

Peeters views the federal government's recent study on services inflation as an opportunity to demonstrate that the government is not the only source of inflation. The study shows that increased fees and value-added tax (VAT) for notaries, lawyers, education, electricity and other 'regulated services' are just some of the government measures that contribute to higher inflation in Belgium.

These regulated services have only partially contributed to a rise in the average inflation rate of 2.9% per year since 2012. Belgium's three neighbouring countries (the Netherlands, France and Germany), by comparision, saw just a 1.3% rise annually in the same period.

"The government is a factor, but not the only one,” says Peeters. Two-thirds of the services inflation in Belgium is explained by price increases in restaurants and cafés (39%), telecoms (16%) and cultural services (12%), the study confirms.

Peeters will now set up a work group to monitor and control the services inflation caused by non-regulated services.

Written by Robyn Boyle