Very low work intensity (i02)

In 2021 (employment data of 2020), the proportion of the Belgian population under 65 living in households with very low work intensity (EU 2020) equaled to 11.9%. The evaluation uses the proportion of the Belgian population under 60 living in households with very low work intensity (EU 2020) as an indicator. To achieve the sustainable development goal by 2030, this figure must decrease. Between 2004 and 2019 the trend is undetermined (assessment of November 2021; without taking into account 2020, because the Covid-19 pandemic impacted data collection).

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Very low work intensity - Belgium and international comparison

percentage of population aged less than 65 or aged less than 60 (EU2020)

 200420052010201320152018202020212021//20152018//20042018//20132018//2010
Belgium--------15.013.112.311.9-3.8------
EU27--------10.18.58.2----------
Belgium (EU2020)14.715.112.714.014.912.611.911.7-3.9-1.1-2.1-0.1
EU27 (EU2020)----9.910.610.58.88.5-------3.7-1.5
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: BE 2019; BE 2020 data collection impacted by Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2022), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl11n and ilc_lvhl11, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Risque de pauvreté ou d'exclusion sociale - Chiffres, https://statbel.fgov.be/fr/themes/menages/pauvrete-et-conditions-de-vie/risque-de-pauvrete-ou-dexclusion-sociale (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Very low work intensity by region - Belgium

percentage of population aged less than 60

 20112013201520182019202020212021//20192018//2011
Brussels-Capital Region--------24.221.022.9-2.7--
Flemish Region--------7.77.96.8-6.0--
Walloon Region--------17.516.917.0-1.4--
Brussels-Capital Region (EU2020)27.526.225.523.724.120.922.2-4.0-2.1
Flemish Region (EU2020)8.68.99.87.37.47.66.9-3.4-2.3
Walloon Region (EU2020)18.418.720.218.117.116.416.5-1.8-0.2
//: Average Growth Rates

The margin of uncertainty for this indicator is indicated in the text for the latest year. Break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel (2012), SILC Quality Reports 2011, https://statbel.fgov.be/nl/themas/huishoudens/armoede-en-levensomstandigheden/risico-op-armoede-sociale-uitsluiting/plus (consulted on 14/10/2019) and Statbel (2022), Risque de pauvreté ou d'exclusion sociale - Chiffres, https://statbel.fgov.be/fr/themes/menages/pauvrete-et-conditions-de-vie/risque-de-pauvrete-ou-dexclusion-sociale (consulted on 01/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Very low work intensity by sex - Belgium

percentage of population aged less than 65 or aged less than 60 (EU2020)

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
females--------16.014.213.212.612.1-4.5----
males--------14.012.012.411.911.7-2.9----
females (EU2020)16.116.513.514.015.813.612.912.312.0-4.5-1.2-0.6
males (EU2020)13.313.711.914.014.111.711.911.611.5-3.3-0.9-3.5
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2022), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl11n and ilc_lvhl11, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Risque de pauvreté ou d'exclusion sociale - Chiffres, https://statbel.fgov.be/fr/themes/menages/pauvrete-et-conditions-de-vie/risque-de-pauvrete-ou-dexclusion-sociale (consulté le 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Very low work intensity by age - Belgium

percentage of population aged less than 65

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
<18--------13.712.210.510.89.7-5.6----
18-24--------14.113.014.812.712.8-1.6----
25-59--------14.412.312.011.711.7-3.4----
60-64--------39.233.234.929.124.5-7.5----
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2022), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl11n, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 30/09/2022.

Very low work intensity (EU2020) by age - Belgium

percentage of population aged less than 60

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
<1813.813.412.012.213.811.910.410.89.6-5.9-1.1-0.5
18-2411.714.010.314.413.812.815.212.612.4-1.80.6-2.3
25-5915.616.013.414.815.612.912.912.412.6-3.5-1.3-2.7
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2022), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl11, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Risque de pauvreté ou d'exclusion sociale - Chiffres, https://statbel.fgov.be/fr/themes/menages/pauvrete-et-conditions-de-vie/risque-de-pauvrete-ou-dexclusion-sociale (consulté le 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 30/09/2022.

Very low work intensity by education - Belgium

percentage of population aged 18 to 64 years or 18 to 59 years (EU2020)

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
at most lower secondary--------36.331.232.934.031.4-2.4----
upper secondary--------14.213.013.613.113.8-0.5----
tertiary--------7.24.75.24.74.3-8.2----
at most lower secondary (EU2020)29.227.926.833.036.129.130.732.430.1-3.00.0-2.5
upper secondary (EU2020)12.513.410.012.114.013.113.912.914.20.20.31.6
tertiary (EU2020)6.46.65.47.37.44.75.14.84.3-8.6-2.2-8.4
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2021), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl14n and ilc_lvhl14, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Very low work intensity by household type - Belgium

percentage of population aged less than 65

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
single person--------32.929.931.430.832.3-0.3----
single-parent family--------36.834.527.632.327.5-4.7----
2 adults--------15.413.813.411.510.6-6.0----
2 adults, 1 child--------6.27.910.08.87.53.2----
2 adults, 2 children--------6.55.53.63.83.6-9.4----
2 adults, 3+ children--------10.38.78.95.27.7-4.7----
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2022), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl13n, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Very low work intensity (EU2020) by household type - Belgium

percentage of population aged less than 60

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
single person30.430.628.731.331.828.529.829.131.2-0.3-0.5-1.9
single-parent family46.539.535.741.137.133.827.332.328.0-4.6-2.3-3.8
2 adults21.321.816.215.915.813.813.011.711.0-5.9-3.1-2.8
2 adults, 1 child7.17.56.06.56.67.79.98.97.41.90.63.4
2 adults, 2 children5.05.64.43.86.45.43.83.73.5-9.60.67.3
2 adults, 3+ children9.29.58.311.410.38.79.05.37.5-5.1-0.4-5.3
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2022), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl13, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Very low work intensity by activity status - Belgium

percentage of population aged 18 to 64 years or 18 to 59 years (EU2020)

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
employed--------0.40.30.40.30.2-10.9----
unemployed--------62.664.066.764.255.5-2.0----
other inactive--------41.740.040.540.636.1-2.4----
employed (EU2020)0.20.30.40.20.40.20.30.20.2-10.90.00.0
unemployed (EU2020)62.567.157.365.461.761.863.262.054.1-2.2-0.1-1.1
retired (EU2020)67.172.667.066.267.558.970.864.264.2-0.8-0.9-2.3
other inactive (EU2020)34.834.733.738.340.638.539.739.635.3-2.30.70.1
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Because of the widespread use of temporary unemployment during the COVID-19 pandemic, the

Statbel; Eurostat (2021), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl12n or ilc_lvhl12, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 09/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Very low work intensity by income - Belgium

percentage of population aged less than 65

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
quintile 1--------54.453.651.051.947.3-2.3----
quintile 2--------17.012.811.612.614.1-3.1----
quintile 3--------4.82.13.52.52.8-8.6----
quintile 4--------1.30.71.51.00.9-5.9----
quintile 5--------0.70.50.60.50.94.3----
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2022), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl13n, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Very low work intensity (EU2020) by income - Belgium

percentage of population aged less than 60

 2004200520102013201520182019202020212021//20152018//20042018//2013
quintile 151.754.048.054.853.752.649.451.046.4-2.40.1-0.8
quintile 219.719.715.215.516.912.211.211.813.9-3.2-3.4-4.7
quintile 37.26.33.33.95.71.83.62.73.3-8.7-9.4-14.3
quintile 42.12.72.31.71.50.61.81.31.0-6.5-8.6-18.8
quintile 50.81.51.51.20.91.00.70.80.90.01.6-3.6
//: Average Growth Rates

break in series: 2019; data collection 2020 impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic

Statbel; Eurostat (2022), European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC), ilc_lvhl13, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 15/06/2022); Statbel (2022), Direct communication 20/09/2022.

Definition: all persons living in a household belong to a very low work intensity household if the work intensity of that household is less than 20%. The work intensity of a household is calculated as the ratio of the number of months actually worked by the household members of working age during the year before the year of the survey and the total number of months that these people theoretically could have worked during the same year.

Working-age household members are defined as persons aged 18 to 64. Excluded are students (aged 18-24), persons who consider themselves retired or receiving a pension (other than a survivor's pension) and inactive persons aged 60-64 who belong to a household where the main income is pensions.

Persons living in households with very low work intensity are part of the target group of persons at risk of poverty or social exclusion, as defined in the framework of the Europe 2030 strategy. As there is a tendency to work until older ages, the upper age limit of this indicator has been raised to 64 years compared to the previous limit of 59 years under the Europe 2020 strategy. In this context, only students (between 18 and 24) were not considered as family members of working age.

In the framework of the Europe 2020 and 2030 strategy, households consisting only of children, students aged under 25 and/or people aged 60 or 65 or over are completely excluded from the indicator calculation (Statbel, 2022b; Eurostat, 2021; European Commission, 2022).

The evolution of both indicators is commented upon below. The indicator agreed upon in the context of the Europe 2020 strategy, with data available from 2004, is always referred to as '(EU 2020)'. For the indicator agreed upon within the framework of the Europe 2030 strategy, data are available from 2015 at the earliest and there is no specific indication. Work intensity data presented here are based on the EU survey Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC). The employment data are always related to the year preceding the survey year. This means, for example, that for the 2020 survey year the 2019 employment data, which were not affected by the covid-19 crisis, were used in the calculation of this indicator.

Statistics Belgium organises this EU-harmonised survey in Belgium and makes the results available, in particular to Eurostat. 2004 is the first year for which European harmonised data have been collected to calculate the indicator. The data used here come from Eurostat, unless otherwise stated, which publishes detailed and comparable results between EU Member States. Since these data are based on surveys, a margin of uncertainty should be taken into account. This margin of uncertainty increases as the indicator is calculated on smaller sub-populations. The confidence intervals for these data are available on request from Statistics Belgium.

From 2019 onwards, the survey methodology has been thoroughly reviewed for better accuracy. In 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic impacted data collection. This makes it difficult to compare the results of SILC 2020 with those of previous years. (Statbel, 2021). Therefore, they are not used to calculate and evaluate the long-term trend. It should also be noted that due to the widespread use of temporary unemployment during the Covid-19 pandemic, the category 'unemployed' in SILC 2021 includes not only the long-term unemployed, but also persons who have been temporarily unemployed for more than 6 months and who are generally living in less precarious conditions (Statbel, 2022a).

Goal: the share of people living in a household with a very low work intensity, and their number, must be reduced.

The Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs adopted by the UN in 2015 include the following targets: “Ensure equal opportunity and reduce inequalities of outcome, including by eliminating discriminatory laws, policies and practices and promoting appropriate legislation, policies and action in this regard” (target 10.3) and “By 2030, reduce at least by half the proportion of men, women and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions” (target 1.2).

People living in a household with a very low work intensity belong to the target group for which a reduction target has been adopted under the Europe 2030 strategy, the so-called persons at risk of poverty or social exclusion (European Council, 2021a, 2021b). They were also part - taking into account the aforementioned change in definition - of the target group of persons at risk of poverty or social exclusion as defined in the Europe 2020 Strategy (European Commission, 2010).International comparison: the share of persons under 60 living in a household with a very low work intensity in the EU27 (EU 2020) increased from 9.9% in 2010 to 11.1% in 2014, before decreasing to 8.2% in 2020. The average for Belgium in that period is 3.8 percentage points higher than that of the EU27. When Member States are divided into three groups, Belgium is part of the group with the poorest performance in 2020. In that year, Poland ranked first with 4.3% and Greece last with 12.6%.

In the EU27, the share of people under 65 living in a household with very low work intensity fell from 10.1% in 2015 to 8.2% in 2021. The average for Belgium in that period is 4.8 percentage points higher than that of the EU27. When Member States are divided into three groups, Belgium is part of the group with the poorest performance in 2020. In that year, Slovenia ranked first with 3.9% and Belgium last with 12.3%.

UN indicator: the selected indicator is related to indicator 1.2.2 - Proportion of men, women and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions, since people living in a household with a very low work intensity are part of the population at risk of poverty or social exclusion, which is the indicator corresponding to the national definition of multidimensional poverty.

Sources

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