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Exports of goods without free zones fell by 27.6%

Exports of goods without free zones fell by 27.6%

Energy sales dragged down the performance of loans, which, in the first quarter, fell 2.9%. The lack of trade agreements, key.

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The exports of goods without free zones Uruguay They fell 27.6% during March, compared to the same month last year, while at a quarterly level the decrease was 2.9%. The energy saleskeys to the poor export performance at the beginning of 2024.

Exports fell 27.6% in March in the year-on-year comparison, according to the latest foreign trade report of the International Business Institute (INI) of the Catholic University of Uruguay (UCU). In that sense, in the third month of 2023, goods were exported for a total of 1,028 million dollars – without considering income from free zones – while last month, the amount was 744 million dollars.

The main determinant of the deterioration of the country’s export performance was electricity sales and holidays. Easter, according to the study. This can be seen in the fact that, if energy sales are not taken into account, the decrease in loans is 15.2% in March.

Meanwhile, during the first trimester of the year, exports of goods without free zones fell by 2.9%, going from the 2,458 million dollars that entered between January and March 2023 to the 2,387 million dollars in the first three months of 2024. In this total, Agricultural and agro-industrial goods were the main products sold abroad.

For its part, Brazil It continues to be the main destination for Uruguayan goods among 47 countries; even though placements in March were reduced by 42.9% compared to the same month in 2023. The three main products sold to the northern country were motor vehicles for the transportation of goods, which accounted for 20.8% of the sales. placements to said market, and malta, with a share of 12.6%.

Likewise, the INI report particularly highlighted the performance of Kenya, which totaled income of 4.6 million dollars, 98% thanks to the placement of 20,508 tons of wheat. In March of last year there had been no shipments to that market.

Trade agreements, a pending

A fact highlighted by the INI in the report was the fact that more than half of the tariff collection corresponded to products imported from China, for a total of 17.3 million dollars. This becomes more important if we take into account that one of the great truncated objectives of this government was to achieve a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the Asian giant, one of its main trading partners, among other things to reduce high tariffs on bilateral trade; fundamental in the volumes negotiated in both exports and imports.

In this regard, during the first quarter of the year, 71.9% of exports of goods without free zones and 71% of imports took place outside trade agreements, realizing the important pending that the country has in that sense. Although placements channeled through agreements grew by 7%, imports fell by 4.7%.

The lack of trade agreements also becomes relevant if one considers that 6.8% of Uruguayan goods exports during March were destined for the European Union (EU), block with which Mercosur has been negotiating a treaty for 25 years.

Source: Ambito

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