Gross value added
Gross value added increased almost continuously from 2003 to 2018
The gross value added of the Flemish Region amounted to 241 billion euro in 2018. Except for 2009, there was an increase in this amount every year (in current prices). Gross value added rose sharpest from 2004 to 2008. These were years of sound economic growth. In 2009, the economy was gripped by the financial and economic crises. Gross value added dropped by 1.5% in current prices that year, followed by a recovery in 2010 and 2011. The growth figures in the following years were again weaker due to the economic uncertainty of the situation in some southern European countries. From 2015 onwards, growth was again more robust.
Trade is the most important business sector in gross value added
Trade is the most important business sector in 2018 in terms of share of total gross value added (32 billion euros or 13%). The top 5 of sectors with important gross value added shares mainly consist of the services sectors and the building sector. Together they represented 45% of total Flemish gross value added in 2018. This was 42% in 2003.
Between 2003 and 2018, the gross value added in current prices more than doubled in scientific research, information and IT services, telecommunications, business head office operations, consultancies and technical analyses and also in water distribution and waste management. These are four service sectors and one utilities sector.
Most business sectors underwent a positive development of gross value added between 2003 and 2018. Important exceptions were the manufacture of IT, electronic and optical products, transport equipment, textiles and clothing, electronic equipment and mineral extraction, in which the share dropped between a quarter and a third between 2003 and 2018.