Table of Contents

    This section presents figures on ITC in Belgium. An indication of Belgium's ranking at the European level is given whenever possible. The sources are quoted in the leaflet Baromètre de la société de l’information 2017 (PDF, 7.62 MB)(Information Society Barometer)

    The indicators cover various areas:

    • internet infrastructure;
    • households and individuals;
    • businesses;
    • collaborative platforms;
    • e-commerce;
    • e-government.

    Most of these indicators are collected by government agencies in the context of international surveys. These data are useful for positioning Belgium in terms of ICT, whether at the national or international level. Some of these indicators also make it possible measure Belgium's progress in implementing the Digital Agenda for Europe by 2020 and the comprehensive "Digital Economy and Society Index" (DESI).

    Internet infrastructure (2016)

    The coverage of Belgian households with basic broadband internet is almost complete, since in June 2016 it reached 99.9%. As regards broadband coverage of at least 30 Mbps (or Next Generation Access - NGA), this reached 98.9%, the second highest in the EU. The convergence of these two rates demonstrates the quality of broadband infrastructure in Belgium. In July 2016, the penetration rate for ultra-fast broadband (at least 100 Mbps), was 13.7% of the Belgian population, which ranks our country third in the EU. The European leader is Sweden with 18%.

    Households and individuals (2016)

    85% of Belgian households have an internet connection. In the vast majority of cases, this is a broadband internet connection (97%).

    11.2% (women 12.4%, men 10%) of individuals (aged 16-74) in Belgium have never used the internet. This figure is a fall of 1.7 percentage points compared with 2014.

    36.9% of individuals (aged 16-74) in Belgium have used internet storage space (cloud computing) for private purposes.

    69.3% of individuals (aged 16-74) have used the internet to communicate on social networks.

    Businesses employing at least 10 people (2016)

    97.4% of businesses established in Belgium have access to broadband internet (fixed or mobile), while this percentage nudges to 100% in medium-sized and large businesses.

    50.3% of businesses established in Belgium use high-speed broadband lines (≥ 30 Mbps), versus 31.7% of European businesses. In terms of ultra-fast broadband (≥ 100 Mbps), this is already used by 22.9% of Belgian businesses, versus 12.5% at the European level.

    74.2% of businesses established in Belgium use a high-speed mobile connection (3G or 4G), which is more than the European average (67.2%).

    28.5% of businesses purchase cloud computing services.

    15.5% of businesses issue electronic invoices which facilitate automatic processing.

    17% of businesses have analysed big data, and this figure rises to 41.8% for large companies.

    Collaborative platforms (2016)

    In Belgium, 38% of people aged 15 or over have heard of collaborative platforms, or have used them, versus 52% at the European level.

    In Belgium, 8% of people aged 15 or over (women 6%, men 11%) have used collaborative platform services at least once, versus 17% at the European level.

    Of the people who have already visited one or more of these platforms, 22% have already offered services in Belgium (women 11%, men 29%), compared to 32% at the European level.

    E-commerce (2016)

    56.8% of Belgian inhabitants (women 55.3%, men 58.3%) have made online purchases, a substantial increase of 1.6 percentage points in 12 months.

    28.6% of the turnover of businesses established in Belgium comes from e-commerce. 18% comes from sales via EDI messages and 10.7% comes from sales (excl. VAT) from a website.

    25.6% of Belgian businesses generate sales through computer networks (the European average is 20.4%).

    39.9% of Belgian businesses make purchases through computer networks (the European average is 42.4%).

    E-government (2016)

    54.9% of citizens (women 52.8%, men 57%) have used the internet in their dealings with public services.

    34.9% of private individuals established in Belgium (women 31.7%, men 38.1%) have returned completed forms to public administrations via the internet, the 9th highest level in the EU.

    54% of personal income tax returns have been submitted to the tax authorities electronically, an increase of 3 percentage points compared to 2012.

    Last update
    29 May 2018