The United States government affirmed that it explores various opportunities to expand bilateral trade with Uruguay.
The US Undersecretary of State, Wendy Sherman, described the meeting with President Luis Lacalle Pou in Montevideo as "very positive and productive" and expressed her "appreciation for Uruguay's leadership in defending democracy and human rights in the region."
ON TUESDAY, the US Undersecretary of State, Wendy Sherman, met with Uruguayan President Luis Lacalle Pou as part of a visit to Montevideo to deepen commercial relations.
The United States and Uruguay are exploring the various opportunities "to expand bilateral trade," declared the number two in US diplomacy at a press conference on Tuesday after her dialogue with the president at the Executive Tower, the seat of the Uruguayan government.
"We are proud that the United States is the buyer of more than 70% of the production of software and computer products in Uruguay," said Sherman. He commented that among the sectors of analysis are clean energy and possible solutions for climate change.
Before inquiries from journalists in Montevideo, Sherman analyzed the pre-feasibility study -considered a preliminary step- for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) that Uruguay and China are currently carrying out. "All countries should consider all the options presented to them, as long as they are fair, transparent, and follow international regulations," he commented.
Lacalle Pou's government announced that it would seek a bilateral trade agreement with China, which generated tensions within Mercosur, a group made up of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay and that traditionally seeks to negotiate consensus.
The US Undersecretary of State described the meeting with Lacalle Pou as "very positive and productive" and stressed that their countries have been "partners and friends" for a long time, so the idea of this trip was "to highlight the importance" of said relationship.
As he did on Monday on his social networks, Sherman highlighted on Tuesday the importance of renewables in the Uruguayan energy matrix. He said that the South American country should share its experience to expand this development in the rest of the world.
The representative of the Joe Biden Administration completed a two-day visit to Uruguay on Tuesday. She held two meetings with Foreign Minister Francisco Bustillo and the Minister of Economic and Finance, Azucena Arbeleche.
The Uruguayan Foreign Minister expressed Uruguay's aspiration to "deepen economic and commercial relations" with the United States, "so that there is greater access" for Uruguayan products to the North American market, the Foreign Ministry explained on Monday.
Also, according to the text, "Sherman expressed his country's full willingness to deepen the possibilities of strengthening trade and investment, particularly through the framework provided by the TIFA," the Framework Agreement on Trade and Investment signed by both nations in 2007.
Sherman also met with a group of young people, representatives of the renewable energy sector, and NGOs that work with refugees and migrants in the South American country.
State Department spokesman Ned Price added in another official statement that Sherman and Lacalle Pou discussed "the importance of the strong bilateral relationship between the United States and Uruguay to promote economic growth, regional security and investment in clean energy, among other areas."
Under-Secretary-General Sherman praised Uruguay's leadership in defending democracy and human rights in the region, as well as Uruguay's regional and global leadership in protecting the environment and tackling the climate crisis. Price remarked about Tuesday's meeting.
After visiting Uruguay, the Undersecretary of State will travel to Peru to, among other matters, analyze the "growing bilateral opportunities for inclusive trade and investment," according to the statement from the State Department.
Sherman, a trained social worker, was part of the previous Democratic administration in the United States: between 2011 and 2015, during Barack Obama's presidency, she was the Assistant Secretary of State for Political Affairs. And between 1993 and 1996, first, and between 1997 and 2001, he held relevant advisory positions in Bill Clinton's governments.