Youth not in employment, education or training

In 2017, 12.1% of people aged 18 to 24 in Belgium were not in employment, education or training. To achieve the sustainable development goal by 2030, this figure must be reduced. This objective will be reached by continuing the trend since 2000. The proportion of youth not in employment, education or training is therefore developing favourably.

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Youth not in employment, education or training - Belgium and international comparison

percentage of population aged 18-24

 20002005201020122015201620172017//20002017//2012
Belgium18.616.214.315.015.513.112.1-2.5-4.2
EU28--16.316.617.215.815.214.3---3.6
//: Average Growth Rates

break in time series: 2001 BE, 2003 EU, 2006, 2011 BE

Statistics Belgium; Eurostat (2018), European Union Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS), edat_lfse_21, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 17/10/2018).

Youth not in employment, education or training, by sex - Belgium

percentage of population aged 18-24

 20002005201020122015201620172017//20002017//2012
females21.116.914.414.815.212.811.3-3.6-5.3
males16.115.614.215.215.713.312.9-1.3-3.2
//: Average Growth Rates

break in time series: 2001, 2006, 2011

Statistics Belgium; Eurostat (2018), European Union Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS), edat_lfse_21, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 17/10/2018).

Youth not in employment, education or training, by education - Belgium

percentage of population aged 18-24

 20002005201020122015201620172017//20002017//2012
less than primary, primary and lower secondary education25.926.325.727.228.923.920.9-1.3-5.1
upper secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary education16.513.110.711.311.810.79.5-3.2-3.4
tertiary education14.112.19.210.311.28.28.7-2.8-3.3
//: Average Growth Rates

break in time series: 2001, 2006, 2011, 2014

Statistics Belgium; Eurostat (2018), European Union Labour Force Survey (EU-LFS), edat_lfse_21, https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat (consulted on 17/10/2018).

Definition: the proportion of young people (aged 18 to 24 years) who meet the following two conditions: (a) they are not employed and (b) have not attended any training or education during the four weeks prior to the interview. The 18-year threshold is chosen in Belgium because it is the age when compulsory schooling ends. The data come from the Labour Force Survey (LFS). Statbel organises this EU-harmonised survey in Belgium and makes the results available, in particular to Eurostat. The survey methodology was reviewed in 2017. Comparison of the 2017 data with previous years should be done with caution. The data used here come from Eurostat, 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. The confidence intervals for these data are available on request from Statbel.

Goal: the proportion of youth not in education, employment or training must be reduced.

The Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs adopted by the UN in 2015 include target 8.6: "By 2020 substantially reduce the proportion of youth not in employment, education or training".

The 2011 National Reform Programme (NRP) that Belgium adopted in April 2011 (Federal government, 2011) as a result of the Europe 2020 Strategy (European Commission, 2010) as well as all the following NRPs also aim to reduce this percentage to 8.2% by 2020.

International comparison: in the European Union, the share of young people not in employment, education or training, which had been decreasing since 2002, went up from 2008 to 2013 in the wake of the economic and financial crisis. From then on, it has decreased again. Since 2008, Belgium has been below the European average. When Member States are divided into three groups, Belgium is part of the group with average performances and performs better than the European average in 2016.

UN indicator: the selected indicator corresponds to indicator 8.6.1 - Proportion of young people (aged 15 to 24) not in employment, education or training.

Sources

  • SDGs, Sustainable Development Goals: United Nations (2015), Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Resolution adopted by the General Assembly on 25 September 2015, document A/RES/70/1.

  • Indicators: United Nations (2017), Work of the Statistical Commission pertaining to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Resolution adopted by the General Assembly on 6 July 2017, document A/RES/71/313.

  • UN Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform: https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/ (consulted on 26/04/2019).

  • Sustainable Development Goal indicators website: https://unstats.un.org/sdgs/ (consulted on 26/04/2019).

More information is available in FR (French) and NL (Dutch).