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Uruguay

Uruguay has a nominally progressive government that came to power on the strength of its critique of neoliberalism. However, one segment of the current Frente Amplio administration has leaned in favour of seeking FTA-type economic agreements. There is ongoing discord within the government around the possible signing of an FTA with the US.

Uruguay is a member of Mercosur, which prohibits member countries from signing bilateral FTAs, and the Uruguayan government’s stance has caused significant tensions within Mercosur, at times bringing it to the verge of dissolution.

Intense debate has taken place within the government itself. So far, the faction opposed to FTAs has won out.

Nevertheless, Uruguay signed a trade and investment framework agreement (TIFA) with the US in January 2007. Many observers saw this as a first step towards the signing of an FTA.

Since José "Pepe" Mujica (also with Frente Amplio) took the presidency in March 2010, a new period in Uruguay’s foreign policy began and the country no longer discusses an FTA with the US.

last update: May 2012


Uruguay seeks alliance with China, challenging Mercosur
Uruguayan President Tabaré Vázquez has a free trade agreement with China high on his agenda.
Uruguay seeks to advance FTA talks with China
Uruguay hopes to press ahead with negotiations for a free trade agreement with China and would ask the Southern Common Market (Mercosur) to consider it.
Uruguay confirms willingness to reach free-trade deal with China
Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez confirmed his country’s willingness to pursue a free-trade agreement (FTA) with China.
Uruguay to sign free trade deal with China
Uruguay intends to strengthen its trade relations with China through a Free Trade Agreement (FTA).
Pacific Alliance members invite Uruguay to sign free trade agreements
Uruguay, which will soon sign a free trade deal with Chile and upgrade its agreement with Mexico, has been invited by Colombia and Peru to turn its current agreements with them into an FTA as well
A conversation with Uruguay’s extraordinary José Mujica
Mujica reported that the Obama administration was not particularly interested in being dragged into the lawsuit Montevideo is currently embroiled in with Philip Morris, a Swiss tobacco company.
How Argentina torpedoed Uruguay’s FTA with the US, according to Wikileaks
Although in public former Argentine president Nestor Kirchner was supportive of Uruguay’s negotiations for a free trade agreement (FTA) with the United States, members of his cabinet warned the US embassy in Buenos Aires that Argentina would block such an initiative in Mercosur, according to the contents of several Wikileaks cables published in Montevideo and Buenos Aires.
Uruguay favors more trade accords, with or without Mercosur
Uruguay formally proposed its Mercosur partners to begin a round of negotiations geared to reach trade agreements with the European Union, United States, South Korea and Canada.
Uruguay: After Doha, FTA with the EU and NAFTA fails once again
Trade agreements with big blocs like the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) or with the European Union have experienced a recent boost in Uruguay.
Uruguay-Argentina: Smoke from pulp mill clouds relations
Everything was in place for the beginning of the end of the long-running conflict: a friendlier face about to be sworn in as president in Argentina, a tiny bit of flexibility on the part of Uruguay, a few points of agreement, and a Spanish mediator appointed by the King.