In 2022, the cost of living in Belgium will increase at twice the speed of hourly wages last year. Figures from Eurostat show that our country’s wage indicators cannot keep up with the rising costs of energy and household goods.
Eurostat, the European statistical office, recorded a general inflation rate of 10.2% in Belgium last year, while average hourly wages rose just 6.2% over the same period. Thus, inflation in Belgium is also higher than the EU average of 9.2 percent.
In particular, housing and utility costs such as electricity and water have gone up. Eurostat talks about a price increase of 32.3 percent. Transportation and food costs increased by 11.8% and 9%, respectively.
This high inflation was also accompanied by higher wages in 2022. The growth of the hourly wage in our country (6.2 percent) also exceeded the average in the European Union (4.4 percent). Of course, this still means that living standards in Belgium took a hit last year, albeit less than in the EU as a whole.
Behind these numbers are real people struggling to put food on the table.
Esther Lynch, General Secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation, did not hesitate to condemn these figures. It proves once again, she says, that “workers are the victims of inflation, not the cause.” “Behind these numbers are real people who are struggling to put food on the table, heat their homes and even pay for transportation to their workplaces,” she said. It says inflation was mainly driven by “companies, especially in the energy and food sectors, taking advantage of supply problems to drive up prices and make record profits.”
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