The Canadian Council for the Americas hosted Uruguay’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Luis Almagro Lemes, for an exclusive address on April 10.
Minister Almagro discussed the economic climate in Uruguay, including the country’s expansion of trade and foreign investment, and opportunities for Canadian companies in mining, forestry and agri-business. He provided an update on Mercosur–the South American trade bloc whose founding members include Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay–and advancements in regional integration.
Uruguay has a track record of good governance and leads the Latin American region in social policies. A recent decision to legalize marijuana has drawn praise and criticism from leaders in the Western Hemisphere, and will have a profound impact on the drug policy debate in the region going forward. Other social initiatives include universal health care coverage, the legalization of same-sex marriage and the advancement of reproductive rights.