|Sulfate chemical wood pulp|
|Frozen bovine meat|
Uruguay, officially the Eastern Republic of Uruguay, is a country in the southeastern region of South America. It is bordered by Argentina to its west and Brazil to its north and east, with the Atlantic Ocean to the south and southeast. Uruguay is home to 3.3 million people, of whom 1.8 million live in the metropolitan area of its capital and largest city, Montevideo.
Over the last decade, local and foreign investment has shown a strong growing trend, quadrupling in the last six years to reach an all-time high. In 2012, in a world scenario of economic slowdown and uncertainty, Uruguay remained among the top countries in the region in terms of FDI and GDP, after Chile and Peru. In particular, the flow of foreign direct investment reached $2.8bn, i.e. 5.4 percent of GDP. The success of Banco República’s model has been supported by a healthy and sound national banking system, within which it has been playing a leading role. With assets of almost $14bn and a market share of over 40 percent, Banco República is an essential partner in Uruguay’s investment landscape. With active and strong support to projects in a wide range of sectors, Banco República is the leading bank in long-term financing in Uruguay and is particularly concerned with the social and environmental features of projects. As a consequence, the bank is strongly involved in investments compatible with environmental care and respect, especially those related to alternative energy sources and eco-efficient projects.
|Agriculture||Soybeans, rice, wheat; beef, dairy products; fish; lumber & cellulose.|
|Manufacture||Food processing, electrical machinery, transportation equipment, petroleum products, textiles, chemicals & beverages.|
|Services (Including financial)||71% (2013 estimate)|
|Banco Hipotecario del Uruguay||Banking|
|Central Bank of Uruguay||Banking|
|ANCAP||Oil & gas|
|Sulfate chemical wood pulp|
|Frozen bovine meat|
Bolsa de Valores de Montevideo, known as the Bolsa de Montevideo or as BVM, is the principal stock exchange of Uruguay. It is based in Montevideo and was founded in 1867. The Montevideo Stock Exchange (BVM) is an institution whose primary function is to provide the platform for the realization of the laying operations, trading and safekeeping of public and private securities. The placement process includes entering new values to the market, i.e., the monetary value. Trading involves the buying and selling of existing securities in the secondary market. Securities custody is a service that provides support and security to investors in the administration and marketing of its values, reducing the risk of loss, theft or forgery. In addition to providing services to its members, the BVM also provides services to the issuers of securities and society as a whole. Since 1867 the BVM asserts the tranquility of a secure and transparent market. Annually, the operators related to the BVM transact almost 3,000 million. The BVM custody more than 2,000 million dollars of its member values. BVM can hold operations for Stockbrokers and the Special Partners. To be a Stockbroker it's necessary being a member of the BVM and meeting the requirements determined by the Uruguayan laws and regulations of the Central Bank of Uruguay. The Special Partners are institutions authorized to operate that do not have quality partnership from BVM. Special Members may be banks, fund managers, pension, social security institutions, and insurance companies. A committee composed of seven members Brokers partially renewed annually administers the BVM. In addition, the Board has a BVM Fiscal Commission and a Court of Ethics, also composed by stockbrokers.
The Uruguay banking crisis was a major banking crisis that hit Uruguay in July 2002. In this, a massive run on banks by depositors most of them from neighboring Argentina caused the government to freeze banking operations. The crisis was caused by a considerable contraction in Uruguay's economy and by over-dependence on Argentina (tourism, and construction boom), which experienced an economic meltdown itself in late 2001. In total, approximately 33% of the country's deposits were taken out of the financial system and five financial institutions were left insolvent. According to many sources, the banking crisis could have been avoided if Uruguayan authorities had properly regulated its banks. The Central Bank of Uruguay had trusted international banks to regulate themselves properly and was too lenient and slow in responding to the crisis.
In 1990, Chemical Overseas Holdings, Inc. (a subsidiary of JPMorgan Chase) acquired with Dresdner Bank Latin-America and Credit Suisse First Boston the Banco Comercial del Uruguay (BC), one of that country's oldest and largest national banks. As the years progressed, Uruguay developed as a large offshore banking center for Argentina and Brazil, largely as a result of its lax banking laws and the predominant view among Argentines that Uruguay was a stable place for their savings. As a result of the banking crisis, some $800 million USD of assets was missing from the BC alone. In the end, five financial institutions failed and hundreds of thousands in Uruguay, Argentina, and Brazil were left in dire economic conditions after seeing their bank accounts literally disappear. In January 2005, the Paris-based International Chamber of Commerce ruled that the Uruguayan government would have to pay USD 120 million to JPMorgan Chase & Co., Dresdner Bank AG, and Credit Suisse First Boston for failing to maintain the solvency of the BCU. The crisis underscores the three banks’ difficulty in managing risk in developing countries and dealing with local partners during a time of financial crisis. As a result, a class of BC's former depositors is suing the three international banks and the individual directors they appointed to BC's board to recover the losses suffered as a result of the bank's collapse.
The Charrúa people inhabited Uruguay for approximately 4000 years before the Portuguese invaded. Portugal established Colonia del Sacramento, one of the oldest European settlements in the country, in 1680. The Spanish founded Montevideo as a military stronghold in the early 18th century, signifying the competing claims over the region. Uruguay won its independence between 1811 and 1828, following a four-way struggle between Spain, Portugal, Argentina and Brazil. It remained subject to foreign influence and intervention throughout the 19th century, with the military playing a recurring role in domestic politics until the late 20th century. Modern Uruguay is a democratic constitutional republic, with a president who serves as both head of state and head of government.
Uruguay is ranked first in Latin America in democracy, peace, lack of corruption, quality of living, e-government, and equally first in South America when it comes to press freedom, size of the middle class and prosperity. On a per-capita basis, Uruguay contributes more troops to United Nations peacekeeping missions than any other country. It ranks second in the region on economic freedom, income equality, per-capita income and inflows of FDI. Uruguay is the third-best country on the continent in terms of HDI, GDP growth, innovation and infrastructure. It is regarded as a high-income country (top group) by the UN, the only one in Latin America. Uruguay is also the third-best ranked in the world in e-Participation. Uruguay is an important global exporter of combed wool, rice, soybeans, frozen beef, malt and milk. The Economist named Uruguay "country of the year" in 2013 acknowledging the innovative policy of legalizing the production, sale and consumption of cannabis. Same-sex marriage and abortion are also legal, leading Uruguay to be regarded as one of the most liberal nations in the world, and one of the most socially developed, outstanding regionally and performing well globally on personal rights, tolerance and inclusion issues.
Cristina Peri Rossi
Luis Alberto Lacalle
Uruguayan peso has been a name of the Uruguayan currency since Uruguay's settlement by Europeans. The present currency, the peso uruguayo (ISO 4217 code: UYU) was adopted in 1993 and is subdivided into 100 centesimos. Uruguayans became accustomed to the constant devaluation of their currency. Uruguayans refer to periods of real appreciation of the currency as atraso cambiario, which literally means, "the exchange rate is running late". As a consequence of the instability of the local currency, prices for most big-ticket items (real estate, cars, and even executives' salaries) are denominated in U.S. dollars. During the military rule, the peso was on a crawling peg to the dollar. A table of the future value of the dollar was published daily by the government (called the tablita). In 1982, the currency was devalued ("the tablita was broken"), throwing thousands of companies and individuals into bankruptcy. In the 1990s, a new mechanism to provide predictability was introduced, this time in the form of a sliding range, with top and bottom margins, at which the government would intervene. In 2002, after a banking crisis and amid a huge budget deficit, the currency was again allowed to float, losing almost 50% of its value in a couple of weeks, and, again, throwing into bankruptcy thousands of companies and individuals who held debts denominated in US dollars.
In 1828, Uruguay's currency was based on the silver peso ($) of eight reales (R or r), commonly known as the patacón, and the gold onza de oro, valued at 16 pesos silver. But a large quantity of debased copper coin also circulated. Lacking the means to implement a national coinage, Gen. José Rondeau's provisional government permitted foreign silver and gold coin to circulate freely (law of 4 October 1828) at its intrinsic value, but it restricted and then prohibited the import of copper coin and the circulation of Buenos Aires bank notes (March 1829). In January 1831, Gen. Fructuoso Rivera demonetized all copper coin in circulation, i.e., the coppers ceased to be legal tender for individuals and would be neither received nor paid out by public offices. Next, it was withdrawn at one patacón (8 reales) in silver or gold for 13 reales in copper. To meet the need for small change, the government obtained Buenos Aires coins of one-tenth real (décimos de la ciudad de Buenos Aires; 24 mm, dated 1822 and 1823), and put about 1·6 million of them into circulation at half face value (Law 17 of 15 March 1831). This is considered the first money issued by República Oriental del Uruguay. Finally, the government created a new monetary system (Law 208 of 20 June 1839), known as Sistema real, with accounts kept in a patacón (peso) of 8 reales, each of 100 centesimos. The patacón was a silver coin, 27·06 g, 0·902 fine (24·43 g fine silver). The standard gold coin was the onza de oro of 27·06 g, 0·875 fine, equal to 16 silver pesos.
Other silver and gold coins were rated in terms of the patacón and onza, according to their intrinsic value. Law 208 also authorized the minting of 20,000 pesos in copper coin, but only about 500 pesos in coins, dated 1840, were actually produced. The Government put the first of these coins into circulation on 15 October 1840 (and, since 1990, Uruguay has celebrated 15 October as "Día de la Numismática Nacional"). Copper coins and a silver peso were authorized by laws 254 and 255 of 13 December 1843, during Uruguay's long civil war, known as La Guerra Grande. The government established a mint (La Casa de Moneda de Montevideo) that produced three copper denominations and a silver peso fuerte or peso del Sitio (aka Montevideo dollar in English). Uruguay did not issue any paper money during this period, but paper near-money did appear. The Law of 26 January 1831 provided for a copper exchange company (Sociedad encambio del cobre) to issue notes for 1 and 5 pesos in exchange for copper coin. These notes were payable to bearer at sight after 90 days in gold onzas, silver pesos fuertes or patacones, or in subsidiary Brazilian silver, and they were received by government offices at par with silver and gold coin. A law of 29 April 1835 authorized a foreign loan to pay off a portion of the national debt and provided for the issue of up to $700,000 in polizas de deuda pública (public debt drafts). These were high-denomination vales (promissory notes) for 400, 500, 2000, and 5000 pesos, payable to bearer.
In 2004 a phenomenon completely new to most Uruguayans developed: the currency appreciated in nominal terms against the US dollar, going from 30 to 24 pesos to the dollar. By 2008 the peso reached 19 to the US dollar, recovering more than half of its loss during the crisis. This revaluation brought protests from the industrial sector, which felt that it lost competitiveness. The government hopes that a floating currency will "de-dollarize" the economy. Uruguay does not seem to have found a mechanism that provides the exchange rate some level of predictability, while at the same time allowing the country to adapt its prices so that its exports remain competitive. n 1994, stainless-steel 10, 20 and 50 centesimos and brass 1 and 2 pesos uruguayos were introduced. 5 and 10 pesos uruguayos were introduced in 2003 and 2000, respectively. n 1995-1996, banknotes in denominations of, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1000 pesos uruguayos were introduced, followed by 2000 pesos uruguayos in 2003. 5 and 10 notes have been replaced by coins in 2003.
|National Song||"Himno Nacional"|
|Currency||Uruguayan peso (UYU)|
|GDP / GDP Rank||74.92 Billion USD|
|GDP Growth Rate||1.5 Percent|
|GDP Per Captial||$21527.268 (PPP)|
< 1.0% Muslims
< 1.0% Hindus
< 1.0% Buddhists
< 1.0% Jews
< 1.0% Other Religions
Amerindian (Practically Nonexistent)
President – Tabaré Vázquez
|Website||Go to the web|
|Public Debt||60.926 Percent|
|Unemployment Rate||8.154 Percent|
|Labor Force (Occupation)||-|