If you are interested in doing business in Latin America and considering which country to launch in, there are a lot of good reasons to choose to invest in Uruguay.
Located in the southeast of South America, Uruguay is known as a stable and prosperous country with low levels of corruption, which provides a high quality of life to the majority of its residents.
In fact, the country’s well-known adherence to the rule of law and secure banking system has seen it earn the nickname the ‘Switzerland of Latin America.’
While the turmoil of the global pandemic caused some economic contraction in 2020, the country still registered a gross national income (GNI) of $15,790 per capita that year – placing it as one of the only ‘high income’ nations in Latin America, according to classifications established by the World Bank.
In addition to its prosperity, Uruguay also boasts relatively low levels of crime, with six major US cities registering higher homicide rates than Montevideo in 2020.
For investors from English-speaking countries, or who do a lot of business in the language, choosing to invest in Uruguay is made more attractive by the fact it has one of the highest levels of English proficiency in Latin America.
Being so prosperous, with a well-established middle class, the country also has a large professional services industry, so finding a good corporate lawyer in Uruguay with high English proficiency is not usually problematic.
Uruguay also benefits from the fact it is bordered by Brazil and Argentina – respectively the largest and third-largest economies in Latin America by GDP – helping to make Uruguayan capital Montevideo a hub for trade.
That status is bolstered by the country’s membership of the Southern Common Market (Mercosur) — a 30-year-old economic association that also includes Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay, and which provides preferential access to companies resident in the bloc to key markets around the globe.
In that context, four good reasons to invest in Uruguay are included below.
4 reasons to invest in Uruguay
Stability & reliability
Uruguay is a prosperous country with a stable political and economic environment, including a long democratic tradition that has seen regular and fair elections followed by peaceful transfers of power for decades.
The health of the Uruguayan political system is highlighted by the fact the country ranked 13 in the Democracy Index 2021, published by the Economist Intelligence Unit – placing it as the highest ranked country in Latin America and the Caribbean, and seeing it perform better than the likes of France, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
Uruguay scores well in the World Bank’s most recent edition of its Political Stability Index, ranking number 20 globally, and once again outperforming all of the aforementioned highly-developed countries.
That stability creates confidence in the market, providing a compelling reason to invest in Uruguay.
Being so well-developed, Uruguay boasts a wealth of available talent in a wide range of disciplines – not only limited to traditional professional services such as law and accounting, but growing skilled industries such as tech.
In fact, Uruguay is an emerging financial technology (fintech) hub, with the country’s first startup to be valued at over US $1 billion being a fintech, and the nation bursting into the top 20 in the 2021 edition of the Global Fintech Index.
Fintech is just one subset of the tech industry in which Uruguay is making a name for itself, with companies in property technology (proptech) and agricultural technology (agritech), also notable rising stars.
With strong levels of English in the country, a well-established professional services industry, and a growing pool of tech talent available, its strong human capital is another good reason to invest in Uruguay.
Capital Montevideo provides easy access to major cities in neighboring Argentina and Brazil – with Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires a short flight or short boat ride away and Brazil’s economic epicenter and largest city Sao Paulo and Chile’s capital Santiago both less than a three-hour flight away.
Notably, an estimated 70% of Brazil’s GDP, 60% of Argentina’s GDP, and 56% of Chile’s GDP are generated in regions close to Uruguay.
What’s more, freight shipping leaving Montevideo – which is also Uruguay’s principal port – has easy access to Africa and Europe, as well as the rest of the Americas, helping it to be one of the most important ports in the region in terms of container throughput.
Uruguay also boasts strong logistical and infrastructure, as well as some of the best and most reliable telecommunications and electricity supplies in the region, providing obvious benefits to companies doing business in the country.
If your intention is to relocate to Latin America as part of your market entry, the particularly high quality of life on offer is another compelling reason to invest in Uruguay.
The country’s prosperity, stability, relatively low crime, good weather, strong culinary culture, good infrastructure and facilities, and the famously friendly disposition of its citizens make it a particularly pleasant place to live.
Beyond that, the country also has high-quality and affordable healthcare, while the fact that it doesn’t face any major natural disaster threats is also another significant point in its favor.
All of those factors contribute to Uruguay being named among the top ten countries in the world to retire to in the 2022 Annual Global Retirement Index, published by International Living.
Biz Latin Hub can assist you doing business in Uruguay
At Biz Latin Hub we provide integrated market entry and back office services throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, with offices in more than a dozen key cities around the region, including Montevideo.
Our unrivaled regional presence, which includes trusted partners in many of the markets where we do not operate, means we are also ideally placed to support multi-jurisdiction market entries and cross-border operations.
Contact us today to find out more about how we can assist you entering and doing business in Latin America and the Caribbean.