* 2008 core profit 1.99 bln euros vs 1.95 bln forecast
* Proposes unchanged gross dividend of 1.68 euros per share
* Sees 1 pct revenue decline in 2009
* Sees EBITDA margin of 32-33 pct in 2009
* Shares up 5.7 pct at 0900 GMT (Adds details, background, share price)
BRUSSELS - Belgium's dominant telecom operator Belgacom forecast on Friday its revenues and core profit margin would fall in 2009, but its shares rose as 2008 profit came in just above its own and analysts' forecasts.
All in all, this is pretty reassuring. It is a relief, the results are good, said KBC analyst Nico Melsens.
At 0900 GMT, the stock was up 5.72 percent at 24.9 euros, against a 0.63 percent drop in the DJ Stoxx telecoms index .SXKP.
Melsens said the rise was also partly a correction after Belgacom shares had dropped sharply to an all-time low of 22.7 euros on Tuesday.
Revenue, excluding non-recurring items, last year fell 1.4 percent to 5.98 billion euros ($7.56 billion), compared with the average analyst expectation of 5.93 billion in a Reuters poll of 12 analysts, and just above the company's own guidance of a decline of around 2 percent.
EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) before non-recurring items fell 4.2 percent to 1.99 billion euros, against analyst expectations of 1.95 billion.
The company said in a statement presenting its 2008 results that revenue would decline by around 1 percent in a 2009 made challenging by an unfavourable economic climate adding to sharp competition and regulatory pressure.
The former state monopoly said that its EBITDA margin would be 32-33 percent, from a realised 33.3 percent in 2008.
Net profit dropped 16.5 percent to 800 million euros.
The group said it would propose a gross dividend of 1.68 euros per share for 2008, the same as the previous year. It already paid an interim dividend of 0.50 euros in December.
Belgacom also forecast that capital expenditure would be between 10 and 11 percent of group revenues this year, against 11 percent in 2008, excluding its 105 million euro payment to renew broadcasting rights for Belgian soccer.
(Reporting by Antonia van de Velde, editing by Dale Hudson and Rupert Winchester)