Germany and Uruguay: Bilateral relations

29.02.2024 - Article

Germany (Prussia) and Uruguay have enjoyed uninterrupted bilateral relations for more than 160 years. The country is home to over 10,000 Germans. Montevideo boasts a large German school, a Protestant church community, a Goethe-Institut, an active German-Uruguayan Chamber of Industry and Commerce and various clubs. Political relations are good, characterised by shared values particularly with regard to human rights and rules‑based trade. We can regularly count on Uruguay’s support within the United Nations system.

Germany is Uruguay’s most important European trading partner in terms of exports, ranking sixth overall among Uruguay’s trading partners. The main German imports from Uruguay are cellulose, beef, wool and textiles. Germany’s principal exports to Uruguay include pharmaceuticals, vehicles, car parts and chemicals. Germany played a key role in the successful conversion of Uruguay’s energy matrix to renewable energy sources, which now provide almost 100% of the country’s electricity. As a result of generous tax regulations in duty‑free zones and for service providers active in the region, several German enterprises have invested in Uruguay. An investment promotion agreement has been in place since 1990.

In development cooperation, projects in the fields of agriculture, sustainable management and energy efficiency played a prominent role for many decades. Now the country is no longer a recipient of development cooperation but increasingly shares its experience within the context of triangular projects in the region. Cooperation remains intensive in the areas of forestry, dual vocational training and renewable energies as well as, latterly, the production of green hydrogen. The Goethe-Institut reports a constant rise in demand for German courses. The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung both have offices in Montevideo. The representative of the German Academic Exchange Service promotes academic exchange. The German School in Montevideo was founded in 1857 and has borne the “Excellent German School Abroad” quality seal since 2019.

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