Flemish unemployment highly concentrated
Research by the Flemish Employment Agency, the VDAB, shows that 39% of unemployment occurs in only 15 of the 308 Flemish municipalities.
Unemployment in Flanders has increased significantly as a result of the economic recession, rising by twenty percent between June last year and June 2009.
In Wallonia the increase is less pronounced, at only ten percent.
At the end of last July this year, 223,532 people were unemployed in Flanders and receiving full unemployment benefit.
Unemployment is highly concentrated in the big cities, in Antwerp and Ghent, and in the former mining regions of Limburg.
Seventy-five municipalities with the lowest unemployment rates only represent 5% of the Flemish total.
The VDAB's Kris De Graef said that it is not easy for municipalities to solve the problem: "They often create new jobs, but it’s the greener municipalities on their borders that often benefit from these initiatives."