Star of August – National Chamber of Commerce and Services of Uruguay
20 Aug 2019


Brief Introduction to Uruguay

Uruguay is located in the southeast region of South America, on the east bank of Uruguay River and La Plata River. Its capital city is Montevideo.


Uruguay enjoys political stability, favorable geographical location, monetary easing policy and freedom from foreign exchange control, all of which contribute to an attractive environment for foreign investment. Uruguay has signed free trade agreement with many other South American countries, and serves as a bridge connecting China with South America.


In recent years, the bilateral trade between Uruguay and China has been growing rapidly. Chinese investment in Uruguay has been constantly increasing in expanding areas. In 2018, the bilateral trade volume reached $4.62 billion US dollars. China is the largest trading partner of Uruguay and the largest importer of wool, beef, pulp and soybeans. Uruguay is the fifth largest soybean supplier to China.


In April of 2019, a Mutual Recognition Agreement of the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) between China and Uruguay Customs was signed.


In August of 2018, the Memorandum on Joint Construction of the Belt and Road was signed between Uruguay and China, the first Mercosur country to do so.



National Chamber of Commerce and Services of Uruguay



The mission of the National Chamber of Commerce and Services of Uruguay is to stand up for the general interest of commerce and private business sector of the national economy, and to offer a wide range of services to promote legitimate businesses. Since its founding in 1867, the Chamber has organized various activities to promote the development of SMEs according to the following principles of action:
· Continuous training of abilities and competences
· Promote proactiveness to address new challenges
· Fair Competition
· Support the diversity of businesses and always put the public interest ahead
· Develop the competitiveness of private sectors and advocate quality and corporate social responsibility.


The Chamber represents more than 15,000 member enterprise across the country through its actions, policies, and participation in various national and international programs for cooperation and SMEs assistance. Some of these actions are to expand business network, enhance the role of education in creating a more entrepreneurial culture, develop education and training programs to facilitate access to information, introduce companies into new market opportunities, enhance competitiveness and support the long-term sustainability of companies and search for alternatives channels to promote technological innovation.


Member companies can also access a range of services: international business school, family business centre, international trade promotion, Eurocentre Office of Promoting Business UE-Latin America (AL-INVEST IV), Latin American Association for promoting Export Services, intellectual property centre, assessment centers for economy, labour and taxes, think tank (to make proposals and plans of action on the main subjects concerning the country's national strategy), issuing of Certificates of Origin and Public Sector licitations.


The National Chamber of Commerce and Services of Uruguay joined SRCIC as a correspondent on August 5, 2019, bringing the number of SRCIC member countries to 82.


Recent activities

1. Seminar on the EU-MERCOSUR Agreement

On July 11, the National Chamber of Commerce and Services of Uruguay and the International Business School co-sponsored a seminar on the EU-MERCOSUR Agreement.


Mr. Julio César Lestido, President of the National Chamber of Commerce and Services of Uruguay, made a welcoming speech. He stressed the importance of the EU-MERCOSUR Agreement for Uruguay by saying that the only way to achieve substantial and steady economic growth was to open up to the world. He also expressed that the Chamber of Commerce, as the representative body of private sectors, should continue to play a leading role in the open economy.


2. Business opportunities in Southeast Asia: Malaysia

On August 14, the National Chamber of Commerce and Services of Uruguay, the Economic Counsellor's Office of the Malaysian Embassy and the MERCOSUR-ASEAN Chamber of Commerce jointly held a meeting to promote the business opportunities in Malaysia.


This meeting aimed to introduce Malaysian business environment and provide economic opportunities to Uruguayan companies. Malaysia enjoys a strategic location, high level of private investment, tax incentive system and is actively engaged in the affairs of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). By the influence of the international integration of ASEAN, Malaysia has become one of the most dynamic economies in Asia and an economic gateway to the Asian continent.