Uruguai flag Uruguai: Contexto político-econômico

Valores de comércio do Uruguai

Foreign Trade in Figures

Uruguay has an open economy, with foreign trade representing 57% of its GDP, according to the World Bank's latest available data. In 2023, the ranking of exported products was led by beef, constituting 18% of the total exports. Cellulose held the second position with a comparable share, followed by dairy products, beverage concentrates, rice, meat by-products, wood, soybeans, and vehicles. The largest import category in 2023 was industrial supplies, accounting for 28% of the total, followed by vehicles and their parts (17%), and food and beverage (14%).

Uruguay's main export partners in 2023 were China, Brazil, the EU, the U.S., and Argentina. Other relevant export destinations included Turkey, Mexico, Chile, and Paraguay. In terms of imports, they mainly came from Brazil, China, the EU, and Argentina. Uruguay is a founding member of MERCOSUR and a member of ALADI, a trade association that includes ten South American countries as well as Cuba, Mexico, and Panama. Uruguay enjoys special preferential access to trade with several countries under ALADI’s Economic Complementation Agreements.

As Uruguay mainly exports agricultural products, they are highly vulnerable to international price fluctuations. In 2023, imports of goods, excluding petroleum, derivatives, and energy, decreased by 2% compared to 2022, while exports declined by 13% compared to the previous year, which was a record year for exports. Service exports, on the other hand, totaled USD 6.07 billion in the twelve-month period ending in September 2023, with tourism exports rebounding.

 
Foreign Trade Values 20182019202020212022
Imports of Goods (million USD) 8,8938,2467,56410,32012,973
Exports of Goods (million USD) 7,4987,6806,8649,54111,185
Imports of Services (million USD) 4,5804,7513,4503,6875,101
Exports of Services (million USD) 5,4715,3573,7223,6995,449

Source: World Trade Organisation (WTO) ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Indicators 20182019202020212022
Foreign Trade (in % of GDP) 47.949.646.054.457.2
Trade Balance (million USD) 2,3853,1132,1534,4733,452
Trade Balance (Including Service) (million USD) 3,2803,7242,4284,4863,784
Imports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) 0.61.3-12.218.212.5
Exports of Goods and Services (Annual % Change) -1.14.6-16.311.711.1
Imports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 21.421.720.823.925.9
Exports of Goods and Services (in % of GDP) 26.527.825.230.531.3

Source: World Bank ; Latest available data

Foreign Trade Forecasts 20232024 (e)2025 (e)2026 (e)2027 (e)
Volume of exports of goods and services (Annual % change) -5.75.43.12.42.2
Volume of imports of goods and services (Annual % change) -0.76.33.73.43.2

Source: IMF, World Economic Outlook ; Latest available data

Note: (e) Estimated Data

 
International Economic Cooperation
Uruguay is member of the Latin American Integration Association. It also belongs to the Mercosur, and has signed a free trade agreement with Mexico. The country have signed a trade agreement with 21 other countries in the São Paulo Round of the Global System of Trade Preferences among Developing Countries (GSTP).
 

Main Partner Countries

Main Customers
(% of Exports)
2022
China 21.5%
Brazil 15.0%
Argentina 8.1%
United States 6.2%
Netherlands 2.6%
See More Countries 46.6%
Main Suppliers
(% of Imports)
2022
Brazil 19.9%
China 18.1%
United States 15.8%
Argentina 11.5%
Nigeria 2.9%
See More Countries 31.8%

Source: Comtrade, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

 
 

Main Products

11.2 bn USD of products exported in 2022
Meat of bovine animals, frozenMeat of bovine animals, frozen 19.0%
Soya beans, whether or not brokenSoya beans, whether or not broken 17.2%
Wood in the rough, whether or not stripped of bark...Wood in the rough, whether or not stripped of bark or sapwood, or roughly squared (excl. rough-cut wood for walking sticks, umbrellas, tool shafts and the like; wood in the form of railway sleepers; wood cut into boards or beams, etc.) 6.0%
Milk and cream, concentrated or containing added...Milk and cream, concentrated or containing added sugar or other sweetening matter 5.5%
RiceRice 4.5%
See More Products 47.8%
13.0 bn USD of products imported in 2022
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals, crude 12.8%
Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally...Motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the transport of persons, incl. station wagons and racing cars (excl. motor vehicles of heading 8702) 3.7%
Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous...Petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous minerals (excl. crude); preparations containing >= 70% by weight of petroleum oils or of oils obtained from bituminous minerals, these oils being the basic constituents of the preparations, n.e.s.; waste oils containing mainly petroleum or bituminous minerals 2.7%
Telephone sets, incl. telephones for cellular...Telephone sets, incl. telephones for cellular networks or for other wireless networks; other apparatus for the transmission or reception of voice, images or other data, incl. apparatus for communication in a wired or wireless network [such as a local or wide area network]; parts thereof (excl. than transmission or reception apparatus of heading 8443, 8525, 8527 or 8528) 2.7%
Mineral or chemical nitrogenous fertilisers (excl....Mineral or chemical nitrogenous fertilisers (excl. those in pellet or similar forms, or in packages with a gross weight of <= 10 kg) 2.6%
See More Products 75.5%

Source: Comtrade, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

 
 

To go further, check out our service Import Export Flows.

 

Main Services

8.1 bn USD of services exported in 2022
49.71%
21.53%
12.04%
7.90%
3.48%
2.63%
1.01%
0.78%
0.64%
0.28%
5.0 bn USD of services imported in 2022
31.65%
27.48%
19.82%
7.28%
3.67%
2.65%
2.27%
2.20%
2.05%
0.89%
0.03%

Source: United Nations Statistics Division, 2023. Because of rounding, the sum of the percentages may be smaller/greater than 100%.

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