One of the smallest countries in Latin America, Uruguay consistently punches above its weight. The number-one software exporter per capita in the region – and third in the world – it’s home to more than 700 IT companies, exporting primarily to the United States and Brazil. A huge benefit to outsourcing in Uruguay is state support of the tech industry: global IT firms are 100% exempt from income tax on earnings through the export of software and related services.
Talent Pool & Education
Omar Paganini, Uruguay’s industry minister, has described the tech sector as being of strategic importance. The country continually ranks highly in technology and innovation awards in Latin America, due to its adoption of fixed broadband, the improvement of international connectivity with a submarine cable system, and all public school children being given access to computers. National initiatives to support innovation and entrepreneurship include Uruguay XXI, a government organization that incentivizes global companies looking to expand to Uruguay and aims to make the country an investor destination.U
Spanish is the official language, but Uruguayan software development engineers are fluent in spoken and written English, and reasonably familiar with business practices and standards in the US.
An early success story in its response to the pandemic, centered on social restrictions and a rapid vaccination rollout, Uruguay has suffered a setback since easing community controls. A risk analysis by Forbes predicts businesses are likely to face promising investment opportunities across multiple sectors in the coming years – notably in tech, renewable energy, extractives and finance. Its reputation as a safe place to travel has contributed to a thriving tourism industry. The economy is expected to recover to 2019 levels in 2022. Confidence remains strong in the financial system, according to BBVA Research. “Digitalization will change the future of many industries, but it will be essential in the financial system where such transformation was accelerated by COVID-19.”
A narrow election win by center-rightist President Luis Lacalle Pou was followed by a smooth and peaceful power transition in March 2020. Ranked 15th in the Economist Intelligence Unit’s 2020 Democracy Index – the highest in Latin America – Uruguay is known for its advanced education and social security systems, and liberal social laws. The country leads the region in Transparency International’s 2020 report for its low levels of perceived corruption.