Commercial relationship between Rio Grande do Sul and Uruguay is expected to generate more than US$1 billion in 2023

Trade between the Rio Grande do Sul and Uruguay it should grow in 2023, compared to last year. While in 2022 the sum of imports and exports between the two regions was in the order of US$ 969 million (the best result since 1997), for this year it is expected surp the US$ 1 billion level. By August, transactions had already reached around US$624 million.

Among Brazilian states, Rio Grande do Sul was the one that imported the most from Uruguay in 2022 and the second largest exporter (surped only by São Paulo). The commercial agenda of this flow consists mainly of industrial goods. The numbers were presented this Wednesday (4) during the Rivera-Livramento Border event, a logistical opportunity for Rio Grande do Sul, held at Fiergs, in Porto Alegre. Improving transport infrastructure is a bet to bring relations between the State and the neighboring country even closer.

O Minister of Transport and Public Works of Uruguay, José Luis Falero, cites three important projects in this regard: the dredging of the Lagoa Mirim waterway, the construction of another bridge between Rio Branco and Jaguarão and the transformation of Rivera airport into a binational airport. Regarding the river mode, Falero informs that the expectation is that the dredging of Lagoa Mirim, by the Brazilian government, will take place next year. On the Uruguayan side, to optimize the use of the waterway, the minister says that the construction of a port terminal on the Tacuary River is planned.

Within Uruguayan territory, another project being implemented is the railway connection from the city of Tacuarembó to Montevideo, which will represent around 300 kilometers of tracks. Falero also adds that the implementation of a dry port in the city of Rivera. “It will be as if it were an extension of the port of Montevideo”, comments the minister. With the structure, cargo will be able to enter Uruguay physically through the port of that country’s capital, but be released from the border municipality. The dry port will occupy an area of ​​26 hectares and is expected to operate from mid-2024.

Rivera, which is located next to Santana do Livramento, is also improving your airport. The complex is currently undergoing expansion, runway and penger terminal works, and should resume take-off and landing operations in October and in November there will be a reopening and confirmation of its binational character.

O Departmental Superintendent of Rivera, Richard Sander, explains that as the complex becomes binational, Brazilians will be able to enter Uruguay through the municipality by paying local taxes, reducing costs. Furthermore, he emphasizes that flights departing from Porto Alegre and Montevideo to the border city will take less than an hour to cover the distance (which between the two capitals and Rivera is approximately 500 kilometers). The investment in improving the airport is more than US$10 million and will allow the traffic of people and cargo.

The installations of an industrial and logistics center, which will operate under the free zone regime, and a technology park for software development are also planned in Rivera. These initiatives should absorb, initially, a contribution of almost US$40 million.
O coordinator of the Fiergs foreign trade council, Aderbal Lima, celebrates the rapprochement with the Uruguayan government and the possibility of new logistical connections between the State and the neighboring nation. “It is an opportunity to expand bilateral business”, highlights the director.

He particularly emphasizes that the border between Rivera and Santana do Livramento is a place with high development potential. Already the consul general of Uruguay in Rio Grande do Sul, Liliana Cristina Buonomo Zabaleta, highlights that the two regions have a strong partnership. She adds that the materialization of business will be beneficial for both the State and the neighboring country.

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