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flag Uruguay Uruguay: Business Environment

In this page: Accounting Rules | Tax Rates | Intellectual Property | Legal Framework | Standards | Business Practices


Accounting Rules

Tax Year
The fiscal year begins on January 1st and ends on December 31 of the same year.
Accounting Standards
Adoption of IFRS (International Financial Reporting Standards) in 2004.
Accounting Regulation Bodies
Accounting Reports
A balance sheet, a profit and loss account.
Publication Requirements
Companies must inform the government of their economic and financial situation by publishing annually its financial statements controlled by chartered accountants.
Professional Accountancy Bodies
CCEA , Board of Uruguayan Accountants, Economists and Administrators.
Certification and Auditing
Companies have to apply the International Accounting Standard which is enforced by law. To control accounting and the accounting documents published by the companies, an external auditor is required.
You can contact an external auditor: Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Accounting News
National General Accounting
IAS Plus

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Tax Rates

Consumption Taxes

Nature of the Tax
Value Added Tax (VAT) - Impuesto al valor agregado (IVA)
Tax Rate
The standard rate is 22%.
Reduced Tax Rate
Certain essential goods, medicines, services supplied by hotels in “high season”, tourist services, health services are subject to the minimum rate of 10%.
Some goods and services are exempt for example foreign currencies, securities, bonds, stocks and other financial transactions, milk, books, newspapers, magazines, educational material, water, services supplied by hotels in “low season”, and exports of goods
Other Consumption Taxes
Port taxes are overseen by the Administracion Nacional de Puertos (National Port Authority). They are applied in USD per ton. An import control fee of 1% (TCI) of the CIF (Cost Insurance and Freight) is perceived by the Central Bank of Uruguay. There is a custom fee (TSA) of 0.2% of the CIF value, and a special service fee in USD depending of the value of the goods.
Uruguay implements furthermore a commercialization tax: IMESI (in Spanish) (Impuesto Especifico Interno, Specific Internal Tax). It is applied only to the first sale. Depending on the good, it is computed on the real sale price or on the official price set by the state.

Learn more about Service Providers in Uruguay on, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

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Corporate Taxes

Company Tax
Capital Gains Taxation
Capital gains are taxed as ordinary income, to the rate of 25%.
Main Allowable Deductions and Tax Credits
Deductions are possible for: depreciation and depletion, net operating losses, and payments to foreign affiliates.
Other Corporate Taxes
- IMESI (Specific Internal Tax);
- FIS (Tax for the Health Inspection Fund);
- ICOSA (Tax for the Control of Public Companies);
- IPAT (Property tax);
- IVA (Value Added Tax).
Other Domestic Resources
Consult Doing Business Website, to obtain a summary of the taxes and mandatory contributions.

Country Comparison For Corporate Taxation

  Uruguay Latin America & Caribbean United States Germany
Number of Payments of Taxes per Year 33.0 30.0 11.0 9.0
Time Taken For Administrative Formalities (Hours) 310.0 367.0 175.0 207.0
Total Share of Taxes (% of Profit) 42.0 47.2 46.7 46.8

Source: Doing Business - Last Available Data.

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Individual Taxes

Tax Rate

Personal income tax Progressive rate from 0% to 30% (US dollars)
Up to USD 10,135 0%
USD 10,136 to USD 14,479 10%
USD 14,480 to USD 21,718 15%
USD 21,719 to  USD 72,395 20%
USD 72,396 to USD 108,592 22%
USD 108,593 to USD166,508 25%
Over USD166,508 30%
Allowable Deductions and Tax Credits
Possible deductions for:

- Children to support;
- Supporting handicapped or disabled children;
- Contribution health fund;
- Contribution to a solidarity fund.

Special Expatriate Tax Regime
IRNR, tax for non-residents at variable rate. See the general tax administration website DGI.

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Double Taxation Treaties

Countries With Whom a Double Taxation Treaty Have Been Signed
Uruguay has signed treaties with several countries to avoid double taxation
Withholding Taxes
Dividends: 7%, Interest: 3%/5%/12%, Royalties: 12%

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Sources of Fiscal Information

Tax Authorities
Other Domestic Resources
Customs Office

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Learn more about Taxes and Accounting in Uruguay on, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

Intellectual Property

National Organizations
The National Directorate of Industrial Property . Uruguay signed the Paris Convention for the protection of industrial property along with the agreement establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).
Regional Organizations
Regional property right regulation in the Mercosur agreements framework.
International Membership
Membership to the TRIPS agreement - Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS)

National Regulation and International Agreements

Type of property and law Validity International Agreements Signed
Patent Law
Period of validity of 15 years
Trademark law
Period of validity of 10 years
Industrial Design Law
Period of validity of 5 years. Period renewable every 5 years.  
Law Nº 9.739 of December 17th 1937, updated in 2003
Author: All his life

40 years after the author's death for his inheritors

WIPO Copyright Treaty
Industrial Models
Law number 17.164, directing rights and obligations relating to invention patents, utility models, designs and industrial models.
20 years  

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Legal Framework

Independence of Justice
The judiciary is largely independent, but has become increasingly inefficient in the face of escalating crime and a backlog of cases.
Equal Treatment of Nationals and Foreigners
Uruguay is largely ruled by law; however discrimination against the country’s black minority and violence against women is a problem. Foreign nationals cannot be always guaranteed an impartial trail from the country’s judicial system. Though a certain degree of corruption exists in the corporate sector and the government departments, government is taking necessary measures to curb it. It is one of the least corrupt nations in Latin America.
The Language of Justice
Spanish is the judicial language used in the country.
Recourse to an Interpreter
Having an interpreter is possible.
Sources of the Law and Legal Similarities
The main source of the law is the constitution of 1967 (modified in 1989 and 1997). The legal system is based on Spanish civil law system. Uruguay accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction.
Checking National Laws Online
Legal information website

Learn more about Lawyers and Legal in Uruguay on, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

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National Standards Organizations
Uruguayan Technical Standards Institute.
Integration in the International Standards Network
The Uruguayan Technical Institute of Standards (UNIT) is a member of the International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML), of the International Organization of Standardization (ISO), of the International Eletrotechnical Commission (IEC), of the Pan American Standards Commission (COPANT), and of the MERCOSUR.
Classification of Standards
Certification UNIT- ISO
Online Consultation of Standards
See the UNIT catalogue.
Certification Organizations
Uruguayan Technical Standards Institute.

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Business Practices

General Information
Doingbusiness , Business indicators and data.
Worldservicesgroup, Business indicators and data.
Opening Hours and Days
Banks are open from Monday to Friday from 12 am to 5 pm.
Businesses open from Monday to Friday from 9 am to 7 pm and Saturday from 9 am to 2:30 pm.
Offices open from 12:30 pm to 7 pm during winter and from 7 am to 2:30 pm during summer.

Public Holidays

New year's day January 1st
Twelfth night January 6th
Carnival February - March
Holy week March
The landing of the 33 Orientals April
Working day Mai 1st
Las Piedras battle Mai
Constitution day July 18th
Independence day August 25th
All Saints' day November 2nd
Christmas December 25th

Periods When Companies Usually Close

Holy week March

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Last Updates: October 2014