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  • 1. January 2011 Life SciencesInvestment opportunities in Uruguay
  • 2. 1. Uruguay’s attractive conditions for investments in the sector Skilled personnel in science and technology research areas related to life sciences (biomedicine, biochemistry and biotechnology). 17% of university students in Uruguay study science and technology in the following degree courses: bachelor of biochemistry, bachelor of biological science, doctor of biological sciences, pharmaceutical chemistry specialist, doctor of chemistry, hospital pharmacy specialist, doctorate of veterinary sciences, among others. There are more than 80 laboratories and research centers that perform biotechnology research. State-of-the-art equipment is readily available as is a suitable building infrastructure with large-scale investments in technology. A core group of domestic laboratories have operated for many years with a deep understanding of the business, ready to update and broaden product offerings. Uruguay is one of the few countries in the world that is free from mad cow and foot-and-mouth disease (with vaccination), enabling supplies of raw materials and processed products of animal origin.1 Uruguay is one of the five countries in the world that is able to produce culturing methods using meat derivatives, which enables access to Middle Eastern and other markets.2 New technology initiatives, such as the Pasteur Institute, the Zonamerica Biotechnology Park, the Pando Science and Technology Park and the Sciences Park, have provided enhanced conditions for scientific resources. This is an attractive feature for multinational firms that wish to perform their own research in the country or outsource research to Uruguayan laboratories. Uruguayan distribution centers focusing on the region and the domestic market provide substantial benefits for both multinational and domestic companies. Benefits include: inventory centralization, reduced lead times for the final client, cost reductions from freight elimination, decrease in nationalized inventory in each country, inventory flexibility, and more. Exports have increased significantly over the years, with production exceeding local market demand 50 times over in some products.1 Source: “Value chains (I) – Pharmaceutical chain 2008.”2 Ibid.2
  • 3. 2. Advantages of doing business in UruguayUruguay has a natural environment that is free from natural disasters. It is politicallystable with a representative democracy and a rotation of the three main politicalparties.Third highest in South America, Uruguay’s per capita GDP was approximately US$10,000 in 2009.GDP has risen at an average annual rate exceeding 6% since 2004 and rapid growth isexpected to continue in the coming years. Since 2004, macroeconomic indicators haveremained satisfactory and inflation has been under control (in the single digits). Pleasesee a list of major economic indicators at the end of this document.  An attractive cultural and educational environment, including the use of several languages in addition to Spanish.  Advanced communications and connectivity infrastructure.  Reasonable wage costs.  Foreign investment receives the same treatment as domestic investment. Uruguay has agreements for investments promotion and protection with 27 countries, including Finland, France, Spain, United States, and the United Kingdom.  Foreign investors do not need permits or prior authorizations. Local companies may be 100% foreign owned.  There are no restrictions on the repatriation of capital, profits, dividends or interest.  The currency exchange market is open and there are no limits on foreign currency trading. Investments can be made in any currency.  There are no restrictions on hiring foreign staff (except for companies located in Free Zones where 75% of employees must be local).  Residency permits can be obtained in three months and anyone who has entered the country legally can obtain one and start working, even during the request process.  Several global indicators show that Uruguay is a top location from which to do business. The following charts illustrate some of these indicators.3
  • 4. Table 1: Uruguays global rank in terms of democracy and political and social stability Low Corruption Democracy Index Economic Freedom Global Peace Index Ireland 14 Ireland 12 Ireland 5 Ireland 6 Chile 21 USA 17 USA 8 Uruguay 24 USA 22 Spain 18 Chile 10 Spain 25 Uruguay 24 Uruguay 21 Uruguay 33 Costa Rica 26 Spain 30 Costa Rica 24 Spain 36 Chile 28 Costa Rica 41 Chile 34 Costa Rica 54 Argentina 71 Brazil 69 Brazil 47 Colombia 58 Brazil 83 Colombia 78 Argentina 51 Brazil 113 USA 85 Argentina 105 Colombia 57 Argentina 135 Colombia 138 Source: Transparency Source: Economist Source: Heritage Source: Economist International, 2010 Intelligence Unit, 2010 Foundation, 2010 Intelligence Unit, 2010Uruguay also offers insurance against political risk to investors through an agreementbetween the Uruguayan government and the U.S. Overseas Private InvestmentCorporation (OPIC). The insurance covers all risks (except credit risk) with claimssubject to international arbitration.3. Regional distribution centersUruguay is renowned in Latin Americaas a logistics platform from whichinternational exporters centralize theirinventories for regional distribution.Uruguay’s regional competitiveadvantages have led to this position,including: a strategic geographiclocation; experience in renderingmultiple logistics services; costadvantages of implementing a regionaldistribution center; and the Free Zone, Free Port, Free Airport and Bonded Warehousesystems that enable storage and various processes for merchandise free from customsduties, import taxes and export taxes (and from income taxes for companies operatingin the Free Zones).Currently, numerous domestic and international companies in the pharmaceuticalsector distribute merchandise to MERCOSUR and the region through various logisticsoperators based in Uruguay that use the aforementioned systems to reach their clients4
  • 5. in just a few hours (JIT inventory management), thus avoiding delays and reducinginventories required in each final destination country.Merck Serono Uruguay - Ares Trading Uruguay S.A. (ATUSA), amember of Merck Serono, a division of the Merck KgaA company ofGermany, a specialist in innovative pharmaceutical products. Since1996, ATUSA has operated as a regional distribution center for biotechproducts from manufacturing plants in Europe for sale throughout Latin America. Inaddition, the company renders regional management services for projects and invarious areas including marketing, regulatory compliance, finance, drug safety andlegal. By mid-2011, the company will have completed construction of a US$ 7.5 millionbiotechnology pole in the Zonamerica Free Zone, just outside Montevideo.4. Research centers4.1. Pasteur InstituteThe Pasteur Institute of Montevideo is a non-profitfoundation created by Institut Pasteur of Paris and theUniversity of the Republic of Uruguay. Pasteur has a highlyskilled staff and state-of-the-art equipment that is availablefor the local and regional scientific communities as well as for companies that employthese types of technologies. The Pasteur Institute works on biotechnology projectsrelated to human and animal health, among other areas. Biotechnology services areperformed for domestic and foreign companies.Currently, the following services are available:  Biochemistry and Proteomics Unit  Animal Transgenic and Experimentation Unit  Cellular Biology Unit  Protein Crystallography Unit  Protein Biophysics Unit  Bioinformatics Unit  Recombinant Protein UnitForeign companies working with the Pasteur Institute include:5
  • 6.  Biopolis (Spain), which in 2009 optimized an animal model outsourcing system (mice) for the pre-clinical study and analysis of biotechnological molecules and ingredients requested by its European clients.  Danone (France), through its own global research and development center, has collaborated since 2008 to jointly develop a platform of highly predictive biotechnology models for the study of dairy food prototypes with beneficial effects on human health at Pasteur.4.2. Pando Technology Pole The Pando Technology Pole (PTP) of the University of the Republic of Uruguay’s College of Chemistry serves as a large research and development center and as a supplier of technology services in the areas of chemistry, biotechnology and nanotechnology for thepharmaceutical, biotechnology and food industries.PTP’s main method to promote R&D activities is through the creation of consortiumswith companies. Through these consortiums, PTP supplies research time,infrastructure and the latest equipment while the company contributes technical staff,supplies and financial resources. Laboratorios Celsius S.A. and the Conaprole dairycompany are two leading national companies that have consortiums with PTP.Other methods of partnerships with small and medium companies exist as well,through the supply of technological services, on demand development of newproducts and processes and incubation for new technological undertakings.Major areas of research include:a. Pharmaceutical industryThis unit operates in three branches: pharmaceuticaltechnology, fine chemicals and natural products.Emphasis is placed on the development ofpharmaceuticals, active ingredient production,organic compound synthesis, natural product workand R&D services for innovative local and globalcompanies. In this area, PLP has partnered with largelaboratories, including Celsius, Athena and Libra.b. BiotechnologyThe Biotechnology Laboratory specializes in the development of diagnostic reagents inELISA formats, latex particle agglutination and immunochromatography. Research6
  • 7. areas include the development of immunoassays for use in human, animal andvegetable health as well as for the detection of small molecules, food contaminantsand environmental toxins.c. FoodIn the food area, PTP works in research and development for mainly local high growthcompanies. The Nutritional Labeling Support Unit provides integral consulting servicesfor the industry and incorporates required analytical determinations, including specificanalyses of trans fats, cholesterol and vitamins, for example.4.3. Science ParkParque de las Ciencias (Science Park) is a Free Zonewith a special orientation towards life sciences andtechnologies focused on industrial, logistics andservice projects. Operations are forecasted to begin inthe first half of 2011. The park will be located in thedepartment of Canelones, just one kilometer from theCarrasco International Airport in Montevideo with fastaccess to the capital city. Industrial scientific activitiesin various areas are expected to be performed at thepark, including work in pharmaceuticals, cosmetics,biotechnology, veterinary medicine, phytosanitary,medical devices and more. It will also operate as atechnology park where software, electronics androbotics will be developed.Pharmaceutical consortium Mega Pharma is the first shareholder in the undertakingand the first user of the park’s facilities. Mega Pharma will produce 60 millionpharmaceutical units at the park to supply 14 countries in Latin America. The initialinvestment will total US$ 93 million. It will be completed in two phases with a 40,000m2 plant that will create 750 direct jobs when in operation.5. Uruguayan pharmaceutical market structureThe Uruguayan pharmaceutical market has more than US$ 300 million in annual salesand employs 3,500 workers directly with a high percentage of technicians anduniversity trained professionals.7
  • 8. The domestic pharmaceutical sector is composed of four production chains that arelinked to biotechnology:3 pharmaceutical labs for human use; labs specializing inveterinary medicine; phytotherapeutic and nutraceutical products; and therapeuticdevice manufacturers.Pharmaceutical laboratories for human use include multinational manufacturers ofglobally patented products and domestic or regional companies that sell similar orgeneric pharmaceutical products.Companies in the veterinary sector include those with biological veterinary specialties,veterinary pharmaceutical companies and companies focusing on imports. Thedomestic market of these products is broad and exports have increased over the lastfew years.In the case of phythotherapeutic and nutraceutical products, although developmentof the chain is incipient in commercial terms, alliances have been formed between thepublic and private sectors along with local producers, which have enabled Uruguay toachieve a higher quality international standard. This sector is showing developmentopportunities given that the international demand for natural products has risensignificantly.Manufacturers of therapeutic and diagnostic devices produce reagents, standardreference and control solutions, analytical instruments and systems for diagnostics ofillnesses and other conditions.Biotechnology touches each of these sectors and is the highest growing area with vastdevelopment opportunities given that international demand for biotechnologicalapplications in various human and animal pharmaceutical manufacturing segments isincreasingly larger.3 According to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, it is defined as all technological applicationsthat use biological systems or living organisms or derivatives for the creation or modification of products orprocesses for specific uses.8
  • 9. 5.1. Pharmaceutical industry production in Uruguay4Pharmaceutical production has grown following a significant decline during the 2002-2003 economic crisis in Uruguay. In 2004, the industry began to expand again andachieved an annual growth rate of 17.4% between 2004 and 2009. In 2009, annualproduction hit a peak of US$ 350 million. Figure 1: Gross pharmaceutical industry production in Uruguay US$ million 400 348 350 323 300 248 241 250 229 207 211 197 192 200 156 150 122 135 100 50 0 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 Source: Central Bank of Uruguay (BCU). 2008 and 2009 estimates by Deloitte.5.2. Uruguayan pharmaceutical sector exports and imports5Sector exports have risen since 2003 to US$ 114 million by 2009. This is due to the factthat in 2003 local labs began to use cheaper raw materials from Asia (China and India).Export values in 2010 were similar to 2008 levels, but were down 8.8% as compared to2009. The addition of antibiotic exports (NCM 2941) totaling US$ 57,683 isnoteworthy. Imports have also seen a significant rise over the last few years andtotaled US$ 147 million in 2010.4 Information obtained from Deloitte’s “Pharmaceutical and medicinal products” report.5 Includes items 2936, 2937, 2939 and 2941 of the Harmonized System from the chapter “Organicchemical products” from chapter 29, and all items from chapter 30 “Pharmaceutical products.”9
  • 10. Figure 2: Uruguayan pharmaceutical sector exports and imports US$ million 200 188 180 160 146 145 140 131 119 114 120 105 104 105 89 94 100 86 73 76 80 61 60 52 43 40 31 28 30 20 0 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 Exports ImportsSource: Uruguay XXI based on Customs Bureau data Table 3: Uruguayan pharmaceutical sector exports and imports per product (US$ million) 2010 Mercosur Common Nomenclature 2008 2009 US$ (NCM) % of total million(NCM 3004) Medications 74.1 81.5 66.8 63.7%(NCM 3002) Human and animal blood fortherapeutic uses 14 14.8 20.4 19.4%(NCM 3006) Pharmaceutical items andpreparations 5 6.5 6.7 6.4%(NCM 3001) Glands and other organs foropotherapy 1 2.1 3.5 3.3%(NCM 2937) Natural and synthetichormones 2.6 2.5 3.2 3.1%(NCM 2936) Natural and syntheticprovitamins and vitamins 5.1 4.7 2.8 2.7%(NCM 3003) Non-dosed medications 1.8 2 1.2 1.1%(NCM 2941) Antibiotics 0 0 0.1 0.1%(NCM 2939) Natural and syntheticvegetable alkaloids 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1%(NCM 3005) Gauze, padding, bandagesand similar items for medical use 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1% Total 103.8 114.3 104.9 100.0%Source: Uruguay XXI based on Customs Bureau data10
  • 11. 6. Regional and world environment The global pharmaceutical market has seen massive growth recently. Global sales have gone from US$ 400 billion in 2001 to over US$ 700 billion in 2008. Annual growth over the last decade has averaged 9.8%. Global exports have experienced sustained growth since 2001 and have averaged 16.4% annually. The five largest exporter countries account for 54% of total world sales, with Germany and Belgium having a market share of 15% and 13%, respectively. In the region, exports rose at an annual average of 8.3% between 2001 and 2009. Mexico is the regions biggest exporter and accounts for 36% of ALADI exports. Brazil is second at 30% and is followed by Argentina (18%) and Colombia (10%). Global sector development opportunities In the coming years, the global pharmaceutical market will undergo transformations resulting from economic, demographic and epidemiological changes. It is estimated that by 2020, the global pharmaceutical market will be worth US$ 800 billion. This will occur to the extent that E7 countries (China, India, Russia, Brazil, Mexico, Indonesia and Turkey) and G7 countries (USA, Japan, Germany, UK, France, Italy and Canada) will continue to on a path of growth and spending patterns in this sector. Currently, G7 countries spend 1.3% of GDP on medical expenditures and have a 79% share in global sales, while E7 countries spend 0.9% of GDP and have an 8% share in global sales in the sector. Demand for medications is increasing and new medical needs arise with an ageing population. It is forecasted that by 2020, 9.4% of the population will be 65 or older, as compared to 7.3% just two years ago. Source: PwC, “Pharma 2020: The vision- Which Path Will Take?” (2010).Figure 3: Global pharmaceutical sector exports Figure 4: Regional pharmaceutical sector exports* US$ billion US$ million 500 431 446 4500 450 370 4000 400 311 3500 350 300 273 3000 246 250 201 2500 200 166 2000 132 150 1500 100 1000 50 500 0 0 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009Sources: Trademap and WTO. Note (*): Exports of countries associated to ALADI 11
  • 12. 7. Institutions67.1. Life sciences clusterThe life sciences cluster consists of companies andinstitutions that create synergies to improve the quality oflife for people. In the cluster, Uruguayan exports are relatedto human, animal and plant health and environmental care.In Uruguay, life sciences companies belong to the followingsectors: a) Biotechnology b) Biomedical engineering and medical devices c) Pharmaceutical and phytotherapeutic industry7.2. Pharmaceutical Chamber of Uruguay (CEFA)CEFA, a business organization with more than 50 years experience in the country,brings together international pharmaceutical companies. Members include thefollowing: Abbott, Alcon, Astrazeneca, Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Cibeles, Merck,Sharp & Dohme, GSK, Janssen-Cilag, Pfizer, Tresul, Roche, Sanofi Aventis and 3M.7.3. National Research and Innovation Agency (ANII)ANII is one of the tools through which the government seeks to advance Uruguay as aninnovative country. The agency’s main objectives include the design, organization andadministration of plans, programs and instruments focused on scientific andtechnological development and the deployment and fortification of innovativecapacities. To meet these objectives, the agency offers programs and tools in areassuch as research and development, scientific and technological knowledge transfers,entrepreneurship and more.7.4. Technology Laboratory of Uruguay (LATU)LATU was created to drive the sustainable development of the country and itsinternational projection through innovation and the transfer of value solutions inanalytical, measurement, technological, management and compliance evaluationservices in accordance with applicable regulations. LATU offers a wide range ofservices that add value to technologies and management processes used by public and6 Contacts: Life Sciences Cluster: www.bionegocios.com.uy; Pharmaceutical Chamber of Uruguay:cefa@adinet.com.uy; National Research and Innovation Agency: www.anii.org.uy; TechnologyLaboratory of Uruguay: www.latu.org.uy12
  • 13. private companies, while seeking to drive development of the entire Uruguayancommunity. Noteworthy investment in the veterinary pharmaceutical sector Merial- A subsidiary of Sanofi-Aventis, a world leader in animal health with approximately 5,700 employees in more than 150 countries around the world. In 2006, Merial made a US$ 2 million investment in Uruguay to build a modern vaccine plant. This plant manufactures 45 million doses of hexvalent per year to prevent clostridial diseases in ruminants. It supplies multiple countries in the region and around the world, including: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay, Venezuela, Afghanistan, Algeria, Botswana, France, Morocco, and others.13
  • 14. APPENDICES1. Domestic and foreign investment promotionForeign investors in Uruguay enjoy the same benefits as domestic investors and do notneed prior authorization to set up in the country.Law 16,906 (dated 7 January 1998) declares that the promotion and protection ofdomestic and foreign investment are of national interest. Decree 455/007 dated 26November 2007 updated the regulations of this law.Investment projects in any industry that are submitted and promoted by the ExecutiveBranch may use between 51% and 100% the amount invested as partial payment ofcorporate income tax, according to project classification. The corporate income taxrate is 25%.In addition, moveable fixed assets and civil works are exempt from wealth tax and VATcan be recovered for purchases of materials and services for the latter.2. Specific legal system for Free ZonesCompanies that want to perform logistics activities must select either the general orFree Zone systems, depending on the type of product offered, business characteristicsand location conditions.Free Zones were originally established in 1923 to develop industrial centers outsidethe capital and were reformulated by Law 15,921 dated 17 December 1987. FreeZones can be either private areas controlled by the Ministry of Economy and Finance(Free Zone Area of the General Commerce Bureau) or state property managed by thegovernment or private entities. There are 11 Free Zones currently.The following activities may be performed: merchandise transformation, commercialactivities, storage, foreign and domestic merchandise and raw material assembly anddisassembly, service rendering for customers within the Free Zone and outside thecountry (and in some cases to Uruguay).7Tax exemptions: Free Zone user activities are not subject to corporate income tax,wealth tax or any other current or future tax. Dividends paid to foreign-basedshareholders are not subject to taxes. Foreign staff (up to 25% of employees) can optout of the Uruguayan social security system.7 Services that can be rendered in the non-Free Zone national territory are (while respecting statemonopolies, exclusivities and/or public concessions): international call centers (as long as the number ofincoming and outgoing calls to and from the national territory is less than 50% of total calls; e-mailservices; e-learning services; electronic signature certificate issuance; software production services, ITsupport and training. Sources: Law 15,921 (article 2), Decree 71/001 (article 3) and Decree 84/006(article 1).14
  • 15. Foreign sales and purchases of goods and services are not subject to VAT. Servicesrendered within the Free Zone are also not subject to VAT.Non-resident entities are not subject to corporate income tax for activities carried outon foreign merchandise in transit or stored at the Free Zones when the merchandise isnot for the national customs territory. They are also not subject to corporate incometax when sales to the national territory do not exceed 5% of total merchandise sales intransit or stored at the Free Zone.Customs exemptions: sales and purchases to and from the rest of the world areexempt from customs duties, no matter if the acquirer of the purchases is a Free Zoneuser.Sales from the non-Free Zone national territory to the Free Zones are consideredexports and sales from the Free Zones to the national non-Free Zone territory areconsidered imports and are subject to corresponding customs duties and nationaltaxes.Sales from the Free Zones to Mercsosur are subject to the Common External Tariff(AEC), as are goods from countries outside the customs union, except for thoseexplicitly established in bilateral agreements negotiated in the Mercosur frameworkwith Argentina and Brazil.Given the preceding regulations, it is generally appropriate to use the Free Zones forcompanies that add industrial value or that perform logistics operations and exportmainly goods to the rest of the world (if products are exported to Mercosur the AECmust be paid despite the Mercosur origin).Government commercial and industrial monopolies are not in effect in the Free Zones.3. Strategic geographic location in the expanded region (Argentina, Bolivia,Brazil, Chile and Paraguay)A report by ALADI and Mercosur showed that in 2004, 64% of all extra-regional goodsin transit in Mercosur passed through Uruguay, a country with just 2% of regionalGDP.8 This result is known as the “Rotterdam effect” where “the amount ofcommercial traffic is much greater than the market itself could support. It is seen incases where small economies are surrounded by much larger ones, with reasonablyefficient ports and a dense land infrastructure network.”9 In this manner,approximately half of the container movements in the Port of Montevideocorresponds to transit (cargo that arrives via ship and leaves the port and the countryvia land means), reshipment (a transit modality applied to cargo that arrives via ship,enters the container yard at the port or warehouses and is reshipped abroad) andtransshipments (cargo that arrives via ship and leaves via ship without entering theport grounds).8 Cited in Hodara, Opertti and Puntigliano (2008), View of Uruguay as a Regional Logistics Center.9 Ibid.15
  • 16. 4. Trade agreements and investment protection4.1. General trade agreementsUruguay has been part of the World Trade Organization (WTO) since its creation in1995 and is part of the Latin American Integration Association (ALADI, 1980) along withnine other South American countries plus Cuba and Mexico.In the framework of ALADI, the Southern Common Market (Mercosur) was formed in1991 with Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay. Mercosur became a customs unionin 1995 with the free movement of goods, the elimination of customs duties and non-tariff barriers between member countries, and a common external tariff for countriesoutside the bloc. Venezuela is currently in the process of joining Mercosur.Within the framework of ALADI, Mercosur has signed trade agreements with othercountries: Chile (1996); Bolivia (1996); Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela (2004); Peru(2005); and Israel (2007), all of which form respective Free Trade Areas with tariffreduction schedules that should be completed no later than 2014/2019, according tothe country.Uruguay also signed a free trade agreement with Mexico (2003), which has enabledthe free movement of goods and services between both countries since June 2004,with certain exceptions that end in 2014.4.2. Investment protection agreementsUruguay has signed investment security, protection and promotion agreements with27 countries, including Spain, Finland, France, United States and the United Kingdom.16
  • 17. Additional statistical dataUruguay at a glance (2009)10 Official name República Oriental del Uruguay (Oriental Republic of Uruguay) Location South America, bordering Argentina and Brazil Capital Montevideo 2 176,215 km . 95% of the territory has soil suitable for agriculture and Surface area livestock activities Population 3.3 million Population growth 0.3% (annual) Per capita GDP US$ 9,458 Per capita GDP (PPP) US$ 13,019 Currency Uruguayan peso ($) Literacy 98% Life expectancy at birth 76 years Form of government Democratic republic with presidential system Political divisions 19 departments Time zone GMT - 03:00 Official language SpanishMain economic indicators 2005-2009 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 Annual GDP growth rate 7.5% 4.3% 7.5% 8.5% 2.9% GDP (PPP) US$ millions 32,048 34,602 38,235 42,543 43,551 GDP, US$ millions (current) 17,367 20,035 24,262 32,207 31,606 11 Exports (US$ millions), goods and services 5,085 5,787 6,936 9,291 8,551 Imports (US$ millions), goods and services 4,693 5,877 6,775 10,217 7,775 Trade surplus / deficit (US$ millions) 393 -90 166 -926 796 Trade surplus / deficit (% of GDP) 2.3% -0.5% 0.7% -2.8% 2.5% Current account surplus / deficit (US$ millions) 42 -392 -212 -1.502 258 Current account surplus / deficit (% of GDP) 0.2% -2.0% -0.9% -4.7% -0.8% Overall fiscal balance (% of GDP) -0.4% -0.5% 0.0% -1.4% -2.2% Gross capital formation (% of GDP at current prices) 16.5% 18.6% 18.6% 20.2% 19.1% Gross national savings (% of GDP) 17.6% 16.9% 19.0% 17.9% 17.1% Foreign direct investment (US$ millions) 847 1,493 1,329 1,840 1,139 Foreign direct investment (% of GDP) 4.8% 7.5% 5.4% 5.7% 3.6% Exchange rate peso / US$ 24.5 24.1 23.5 20.9 22.5 Reserve assets (US$ millions) 3,071 3,097 4,121 6,329 8,373 Unemployment rate (% of EAP) 12.2% 11.4% 9.7% 7.9% 7.7% Annual inflation rate 4.9% 6.4% 8.5% 9.2% 7.5% Net foreign debt (US$ millions) 8,938 9,157 9,662 8,254 11,12310 Note: GDP data was taken from the IMF; data on foreign trade, FDI, exchange rate, international reserves andforeign debt was provided by the Central Bank of Uruguay (BCU); population growth, literacy, unemployment andinflation data comes from the National Statistics Institute (INE).11 For 2008 and 2009, data includes a partial estimate of activities at Free Zones and information on the surveycoordinated with the Uruguayan Chamber of Information Technologies for software related activities.17
  • 18. Investor ServicesAbout UsUruguay XXI is the country’s investment and export promotion agency. Among otherfunctions, Uruguay XXI provides no cost support to foreign investors, both those whoare evaluating where to make investments as well as those currently operating inUruguay.Investor ServicesUruguay XXI is the first point of contact for foreign investors. Services we provideinclude:  Promotion. We promote investment opportunities at strategic events, business missions and round tables.  Facilitation of foreign investor visits, including meeting organization with public officials, suppliers, potential partners and business chambers.  Contact with key players. We provide contacts with government agencies, industry players, financial institutions, R&D centers and potential partners, among others.  Macroeconomic and industry information. Uruguay XXI regularly prepares reports on Uruguay and the various sectors of the economy.  Tailored information. We prepare customized information to answer specific questions, such as macroeconomic data, labor market information, tax and legal aspects, incentive programs for investments, location and costs. Publication of investment opportunities. On our website, we periodically publish information on investment projects by public entities and private companies. www.uruguayxxi.gub.uy/investinuruguay invest@uruguayxxi.gub.uy18