Trade relations between the EU and Uruguay form part of the Framework Cooperation Agreement.
The EU is Uruguay's third-biggest trade partner, with an 11 % share of the Latin American country's exports and a 15 % share of its imports in 2015, putting it behind only China and Brazil. In 2015, the volume of goods exchanged between the two blocs exceeded €3.6 billion, up 30 % from the previous year.
Exports to Uruguay are dominated by machinery and chemical products, while imports are mainly agricultural products and raw materials.
In particular, the EU is a key market for high-quality Uruguayan beef and the destination for almost 21 % of exports of this product, as Uruguay benefits from a specific high-quality quota (Hilton quota: 6 300 tonnes) and is one of the few countries in the world that has access to the EU High-Quality beef quota (Regulation EU 481/2012, 48 200 tonnes).
Exports of services to Uruguay have also grown considerably in recent years, increasing from €800 million in 2010 to almost €1.3 billion in 2014.
The EU and Mercosur
In the context of regional integration, following the Framework Cooperation Agreement of 1995, the EU and Mercosur began preparing an Interregional Association Agreement, which is currently under negotiation. The difficulty of this process, which was relaunched in 2010, reflects the significance of managing to bring the two regions together and create the largest free-trade area in the world, with more than 750 million residents. The agreement will strengthen political dialogue and cooperation and expand economic and trade relations between the regions. On 11 May 2016, for the first time since negotiations were restarted, proposals were exchanged in the areas of access to goods, services and government procurement.
The EU remains Mercosur's main trade partner and the biggest investor in the region. In 2015, trade between the two blocs amounted to €93 456 billion (€49 267 billion in exports from the EU to Mercosur and €44 189 billion in imports). European investment stock in Mercosur exceeded €410 million in 2014.
- Uruguay is a member of the World Trade Organization.
- Trade information: sustainability impact assessment of the negotiations for the EU-Mercosur Association Agreement.
- EU countries' Chambers of Commerce in Uruguay:
- Business organisations: