Fecha de publicación: 04/05/2018

The event was attended by Economy Minister Danilo Astori and Uruguayan companies and institutions interested in doing business or establishing contacts with Switzerland.

Along with the Embassy of Switzerland in Uruguay, the Swiss-Uruguayan Chamber of Commerce and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Uruguay XXI received the Swiss Minister of Economy, Johann Schneider-Ammann, who arrived in the country accompanied by a delegation of more than 50 representatives of the public and private sector in the areas of food, tourism, logistics and insurance, education, health and science, among others.

The Uruguay - Switzerland Business Meeting, held at the Hyatt Hotel, was opened by the Uruguayan Minister of Economy, Danilo Astori, who indicated that Switzerland is a distinguished member of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), and it accumulates almost 90% of the commercial flows that Uruguay has with that block.

He also pointed out that the country received investments from Switzerland, which constitute 6% of the total capital stock coming from abroad. "Switzerland from EFTA and Uruguay from Mercosur have an important job to continue deepening this relationship," he concluded.

The Swiss minister, meanwhile, emphasized his interest in strengthening ties and pointed out that a free trade agreement between EFTA and Mercosur would be beneficial for all the parties.

Álvaro Inchauspe, general manager of Uruguay XXI, presented the advantages that Uruguay offers to invest, work and live. He also stressed that the country can be one of the main trading partners of Switzerland in its business with Latin America thanks to its competitive advantages as an exceptional gateway to the region and an extended market of 250 million inhabitants.

His Swiss counterpart Daniel Küng, CEO of Switzerland Global Enterprise, said Uruguay is a country with high political stability, sustained growth and skilled work. "I think it's a country where many Swiss companies find their place," he explained.

Finally, the general director for Integration and Mercosur Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Uruguay, Valeria Csukasi, made a presentation on the negotiations in the Mercosur-EFTA agreement.

Csukasi explained that for a year now negotiations have been held with the bloc on the aspirations and sensitive aspects of each party. She also emphasized that it is a value that makes it possible to reach solutions that contemplate the interests of both parties within a reasonable period.

During the meeting, Uruguay XXI and the agency Global Switzerland Enterprise signed a cooperation agreement to promote a more effective and beneficial exchange for the promotion of the investment of goods and services in both countries.

In addition, the Uruguayan and Swiss businessmen attending the meeting had the opportunity to exchange information and strengthen ties with possible business counterparts in a network space especially designed for that purpose.

Data for the first quarter of 2018 showed that exports to Switzerland, excluding sales from free trade zones, reached US $ 12.8 million. Some 40 Swiss companies are currently established in Uruguay, mainly in the areas of financial, professional and telecommunications services, as well as in the commerce and food industry sectors.

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