Mapping the economic and societal impact of the blue economy in Flanders
Commissioned by the spearhead cluster De Blauwe Cluster, IDEA Consult is making an update of the economic and social importance of the blue economy in Flanders. The blue economy is defined as all economic activities related to oceans, seas and coasts. This entails both conventional activities of the blue economy such as fishing, port activities, coastal tourism and shipping, as well as emerging activities such as off-shore wind, aquaculture and biogenic coastal defence. Using an innovative impact assessment method, the previous impact study showed for the first time the sheer significance of the blue economy for Flanders: reaching a share of 5.2% of Flanders’ regional GDP and 154 000 full-time jobs. The first study was released early 2020. In the meantime various new developments occurred. Hence arises the need for an update. The current study also aims to illustrate the transition impact as well as the implications of the results for the future Blue Cluster strategy.