According to businesscarriers, Uruguay has an export-oriented agricultural sector, a highly skilled workforce. Located between the “big neighbors” – Brazil and Argentina – Uruguay depends on their economic situation, as 45% of Uruguayan exports are sold in the markets of these countries. Since the devaluation of the Brazilian real in 1999, Uruguay has been in recession. FMD outbreaks in 2001, a crisis in Argentina in 2002 cause a crisis in Uruguay.
The decline in GDP compared with the previous year was: in 1999 – 3.4%, in 2000 – 1.9%, in 2001 – 3.4%, in 2002 – 10.5%. As a result, GDP per capita decreased from $6,016 in 1999 to $5,657 in 2001 (in 1995 uniform prices), although it remains one of the highest in Latin America. The labor force is 1.235 million people. (2000). Unemployment in the country, where previously it did not consistently exceed 10% of the economically active population, reached due to the decline in production to the end. 2002 18%.
The decline in inflation, which began in the 1st half. 1990s, it was violated in 2002 (1990 – 129.0%, 1995 – 24.3%, 2000 – 5.1%, 2001 – 3.6%, 2002 – 25%). The financial stabilization program carried out since 1991 was based on controlling inflation by setting a framework for the devaluation of the Uruguayan peso. In the context of the financial and economic crisis, Uruguay switched from July 20, 2002 to a free market quotation of its national currency. If in December 2001 1 dollar corresponded to 14.768 pesos, then in December 2002 – 27.200 pesos. As a result, Uruguayan goods have become much more expensive than Argentinean or Brazilian ones and cannot compete with them. The devaluation of the Uruguayan peso against the dollar led to an increase in consumer prices (an increase in 2002 compared to 2001 was 24.7%).
In 2001, the share of agriculture was 6% of GDP, industry – 29%, services and trade – 65%, and employment – respectively 14, 16 and 70%. The industry is mainly represented by branches of the light and food industries for the processing of agricultural raw materials, as well as mechanical engineering, oil refining, and the chemical industry. The products of the agro-industrial complex bring the country 65% of foreign exchange earnings. The main role belongs to the food industry, which accounts for 43% of industrial production (2000), followed by leather and clothing (9%), chemical industry (8%), mechanical engineering (8%), oil refining (2%). The main industry in the food industry is meat packing. In the textile industry, wool processing for export and the production of synthetic fabrics and threads stand out. In 2001, the volume of industrial production decreased by 2.4% compared to 2000, and in 2002 a number of industries, such as manufacturing, reduced production by 10%. Electricity generation 7.527 billion kWh (2000). 93% of electricity is generated at hydroelectric power plants, 7% – at thermal power plants. Electricity consumption is 7.35 billion kWh (2000), while 950 million kWh is exported and 1.3 billion kWh is imported.
Agriculture provides the country with its staple food and is the main source of exports. Each inhabitant has 5 hectares of fertile land, which is 6 times higher than even the world level. 85% of the land is used for pastures. Ideal climatic conditions make it possible to obtain rich harvests in agriculture and develop animal husbandry. In 1999-2001, production in the industry decreased (by 7.5% in 1999, by 3.5% in 2000, by 5.1% in 2001 compared to the previous year). Reasons: decreased competitiveness of Uruguayan agricultural products, lower world prices for agricultural products, the crisis in Brazil and Argentina, FMD disease in cattle, they led to a deep recession in the industry. In 2002, unlike other sectors of the economy, production in the industry managed to increase by 7%, mainly due to the growth in the production of meat (beef). Animal husbandry is the main branch of agriculture. The herd of cattle is estimated at 10.6 million heads (2001). In connection with the crisis state of the world wool market, the increase in demand for milk and dairy products from the MERCOSUR member countries in Uruguay has become more and more pronounced. The number of sheep in 2000 was 16.5 million heads. Here, following the decline in world prices for wool, the industry is being reoriented from wool to meat. Arable land in crop production accounts for 7.4% of agricultural land (2000). The main cereals (thousand tons, 2000): rice (1300), wheat (559.2) and barley (196). Arable land in crop production accounts for 7.4% of agricultural land (2000). The main cereals (thousand tons, 2000): rice (1300), wheat (559.2) and barley (196). Arable land in crop production accounts for 7.4% of agricultural land (2000). The main cereals (thousand tons, 2000): rice (1300), wheat (559.2) and barley (196).