Foreign direct investment in Uruguay totaled 2.79bn dollars last year, which is slightly higher than the 2.68bn of 2012, equivalent to 5% of GDP, according to the latest report on FDI for the region from the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean.
A major open pit mining project in Uruguay to extract and export magnetite (a kind of iron ore) and which the government of President Jose Mujica plans to instrument this month has been exposed to a battery of criticism because the administration refuses to show the terms of the contract and farm groups argue there is no final environment impact assessment study.
Uruguay’s president Jose Mujica anticipated that his intention is to authorize the UPM pulp mill to expand production, as the Finnish company had requested, but conditioned to certain additional environmental measures, which will not be made public until talks with Argentine president Cristina Fernandez on Monday.
The Uruguayan government was taken aback by the announcement that the Indian iron-ore mining group Zamin Ferrous has decided to downgrade the priority of its several hundred millions dollar project in Uruguay from position one to four.
President Jose Mujica said that Swiss-based Zamin Ferrous iron-ore project feasibility study for an 18 million mt/year project has not been approved and given the controversy that has surfaced he supports the idea of holding a referendum on the project.