Uruguay Country Profile

Passport Ranking
Passport Score
Visa-free Countries
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North and South America
Capital City

Largest City
Uruguayan peso

3.6 million

Life Expectancy
78.4 years
GDP (nominal)
$71.2 billion

Cost of Living
English Proficiency
Inexpensive (3/7)
Very comfortable (1/5)
Safe (3/7)
Clean (2/5)
Low (4/5)

Taxation Type: Territorial

Certain non-Uruguayan investment and employment income can still be taxed in limited circumstances.

Sovereign Research's take:

Uruguay is part of the Mercosur, allowing its citizens to obtain residency in any other Mercosur country using a simplified procedure.
Our founder, Simon Black, has spent a fair amount of time in Uruguay over the years. And most of our team members have vacationed there with gusto.

Uruguay is small, pretty and relaxing.

To outsiders, Uruguay may seem very similar to Argentina. Both have a very European feel. Their populations hail largely from Europe; mainly Italy and Spain.

They are so similar, in fact, that you may think Uruguay is just another province of Argentina.

Culturally speaking, Uruguay has quite a lot to offer. Montevideo, for example, is full of art deco architecture, and it is a significant arts center. The arts are even celebrated on the Uruguayan peso, which features playwrights and poets instead of generals and presidents.

Punta del Este – Uruguay’s primary resort town just a two-hour drive from Uruguay’s capital and largest city, Montevideo – deserves a separate mention. 

The coastal city serves as a playground for Argentinians, who own most of the real estate there. And frankly, the entire country has a resort-type feel. It caters to wealthy Argentines who come to have fun during the summer months, and has quite a glamorous feel.

It is one of the most “binary” places on Earth. It’s OFF for nine months of the year — sleepy and quiet. And ON during the high season – bustling with activity and nightlife.

Rental accommodation prices tend to jump when Punta heats up between December and February. Many expats leave town for this period because it becomes so expensive.

The lifestyle in Uruguay is generally very pleasant, especially if you like the bucolic life and rolling pampas – the endless plains also found elsewhere in South America.  

And if you’re more of a beach lover, the coastline provides ample opportunity for scenic walks along the shore.

Cows in Uruguay outnumber humans – hence Uruguay’s nickname, the “Carnivore’s Paradise”. (The country is also a major exporter of beef.)

In terms of downside considerations, Uruguay’s cost of living is the highest in South America. But still, it’s not exorbitant. It is also one of the safer countries in the region.

Obtaining residency is straightforward in Uruguay. 

Keep in mind however, that Uruguay is not a place for a second passport. Uniquely in the region, it only offers the so-called “legal citizenship” but not a “proper” naturalization. It allows unconditional living inside the country, but does not give you any rights outside of it (such as a passport to travel).

Uruguay has historically also served as a tax haven, where Argentinians could stash some cash and keep it from their notoriously corrupt and Socialist-leaning government.

So, if you are looking for some peace and quiet… if you love meat and a nice, laid-back feel… then Uruguay may be a country to consider for your Plan B..

Service Providers available in Uruguay in Sovereign Research's Rolodex:

  • Immigration (residency, citizenship)
  • Full relocation services (real estate search, bank account opening, driver's licence, etc.)
  • Tax advice (attorneys and/or accountants)
  • Corporate services (company formation, etc.)
  • Real Estate (agents, lawyers)
Obtain access by signing up for Sovereign Confidential

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