Record 100,000 new jobs created in 2022: "the year in which we won the battle of gas", National bank of Belgium concludes

Towering inflation and sky-high energy prices: those two elements sum up 2022 for the National Bank of Belgium (NBB). It was "the year when extremely high inflation hurt," but the "battle of gas" was won in 2022, National Bank governor Pierre Wunsch said at the presentation of the NBB's annual report. Despite a challenging economic and geopolitical context, the report shows a record amount of over 100,000 jobs were created last year in Belgium.

"2022 was a year of war in Europe, a year of extremely high inflation and energy prices," explained the National Bank's top executive. "But it was also a year of strong economic and job growth. And 2022 was also the year we won the 'battle of gas'." Everyone made efforts to consume less gas, according to Wunsch, which had a favourable impact on energy consumption and prices.

Inflation finally reached 8.3 per cent last year, a record level. Part of the reason was the Russian invasion of Ukraine. As a result, natural gas prices skyrocketed and, coupled with that, the cost of electricity. These were the main drivers of inflation. Moreover, disrupted supply chains, government-funded Covid support measures and economic recovery after the pandemic further drove inflation.

"2022 was a year of war in Europe, a year of extremely high inflation and energy prices. But it was also a year of strong economic and job growth."

The Belgian labour market continued to perform well in 2022, following the solid post-corona recovery in 2021. Altogether, the NBB expects around 101,000 new jobs will have been added. "The highest figure ever," governor Pierre Wunsch stressed during the National bank's annual report presentation.

This is the most significant job increase since measurements in Belgium began in 1953. On the one hand, a net 86,000 workers were added, a "very dynamic job creation", the report states. On top of that, 15,000 self-employed started a new activity, a figure in line with previous years.

The increase resulted from economic recovery after the pandemic years of 2020 and 2021. Wunsch stressed that the Belgian economy showed "a great deal of resilience," but there was a marked slowdown at the end of 2022. Admittedly, job growth goes hand in hand with many vacancies. In other words, it remains difficult for companies to find new people.

Economic growth in Belgium reached 3.1 per cent last year, according to the NBB.



National Bank of Belgium (NBB) governor Pierre Wunsch © BELGA PHOTO BENOIT DOPPAGNE

Get updates in your mailbox

By clicking "Subscribe" I confirm I have read and agree to the Privacy Policy.


Belga News Agency delivers dependable, rapid and high-quality information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, from Belgium and abroad to all Belgian media. The information covers all sectors, from politics, economics and finance to social affairs, sports and culture, not to mention entertainment and lifestyle.

Every day, our journalists and press photographers produce hundreds of photos and news stories, dozens of online information items, plus audio and video bulletins, all in both national languages. Since the end of March 2022 English has been added as a language.

For public institutions, businesses and various organisations that need reliable information, Belga News Agency also offers a comprehensive range of corporate services to meet all their communication needs.


Arduinkaai 29 1000 Brussels