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BFW digitaal / RBF numérique 2020/7

  • Wednesday 26/8/2020
    Etienne de Callatay

    The Covid-19 pandemic calls for a contracyclical policy support of great magnitude. It would be a waste of not infinite means not using it in a way to simultaneously reallocate resources in a sense that was already clearly identified prior to the crisis, starting with environmental sustainability. In addition, both policy and theoretical lessons from the crisis have to be drawn. The paper addresses ten issues: (1) the sense of economic forecasts at times of an unanticipated major crisis; (2) the art of cost-benefit analysis applied to public health trade-offs; (3) rules of the market economy game lacking consistency to the advantage of shareholders; (4) the compatibility between urgency and structural reforms; (5) the conflict between cost compression and business resilience; (6) the additional challenges facing the assumed virtues of international trade; (7) the likelihood of an eventual inflation revival; (8) the limits of both monetary and budgetary policies being reconsidered, as their interaction; (9) the environmental transition when the more difficult “end of the month” does interplay with the need to prevent the “end of the world”; and (10) crises as tailwind or headwind for European integration.

  • Wednesday 26/8/2020
    Wie zal de coronacrisis betalen?

    We show that in the current macroeconomic environment, in which nominal interest rates are expected to remain below the sum of real GDP growth and inflation for some time, the rise in government debt due to the Covid-19 recession and fiscal policy responses is feasible without ever having to raise taxes. Specifically, a rise in public debt due to a temporal increase in the deficit automatically vanishes over time. Even when Covid-19 leads to a permanent rise in the government deficit, a permanent (moderate) decline in real GDP growth and persistent (moderate) deflation, the debt-to-GDP ratio will stabilize in the long run without a later increase in taxes, even though the level of stabilization will be at a higher level. Our purpose is not to argue for more public debt and an unlimited stimulus, since interest rates may not be lower forever, but to have a richer discussion of the fiscal policy response to the crisis than is currently the case.

  • Wednesday 26/8/2020
    Veerle Nuyts / Xavier Vanden Bosch

    This article highlights what the European Semester, the annual coordination cycle of economic, employment and social policies of Member States, stands for, with an emphasis on how it has evolved over time (part I). The diagnosis by the European Commission services of the economic dimension of this unprecedented crisis is also summarised (part II). We will then set out the contours of the economic response the Commission has proposed, i.e. an EU Recovery Plan, as amended and validated by all 27 EU Leaders on 21 July 2020 (part III). We focus on the backbone of this plan – the Recovery and Resilience Facility - which is to radically increase the European Semester’s relevance in driving the socio-economic repair and recovery of the European economy (part IV). We also describe the reform and investment opportunities for Belgium, as identified in the context of the European Semester, that could be part of a Belgian recovery and resilience plan that can help Belgium recover and emerge stronger from this crisis (part V). In a last section, we set out the next steps for the implementation of the EU Recovery Plan as well as our conclusions (part VI).

  • Wednesday 26/8/2020

    Dit boek heeft tot doel enige ideeën aan te brengen over de mogelijke aanpassing van de financiële instellingen – in België dus vooral de banken – aan de mogelijke en/of gewenste evolutie van de economie en de maatschappij in het algemeen.