Uruguayan entrepreneurs who managed to internationalize their businesses despite the pandemic

Going out in the storm: Uruguayan entrepreneurs who managed to internationalize their businesses despite the pandemic

Joaquin Symonds

Economy and Business> EXPERIENCES

Uruguayan entrepreneurs tell about the experience of settling in another country in a year of closed borders and markets slowed by the health crisis

Reading time:

Feb 21, 2021 at 08:00

There comes a time when looking abroad becomes one of the best options for any business that wants to continue growing. To finalize the exit from Uruguayan borders, important negotiations are almost obligatory in person.

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Valencian exports fall by 8.1% in the year of the pandemic

By subsectors, food and beverages were the ones that pushed up Valencian sales abroad, growing by more than 10% compared to 2019 after exporting a value of 6,586 million and representing 23% of the total Valencian exports. Citrus fruits grew by 14.3% and meat products by 33.8%, the latter surpassing wine in business volume. Household appliances (13.3%) and textile clothing (7.6%) were other of the few sectors that managed to sell more than in the year before the pandemic.

As was foreseeable, the other side of the coin is played by the automotive sector, which exported 20.7% less. 4,570 million in cars and motorcycles were sold abroad (-19.8%), while the components lost another 25.3%, to 932 million. Despite the crisis that plagues the sector, it continues to represent almost one in every five euros of Valencian goods sales abroad.

In addition, considering only the December data that were also presented yesterday, a certain recovery is perceived, since the Community exported 34.5% more vehicles, worth 344 million. In that month, sales abroad rose as a whole by 4.2%, compared to 0.9% in Spain.

The next sector with the highest export weight, non-chemical semi-invoices, sold 4,444 million, 0.7% more, thanks to paper and ceramic products, while non-ferrous metals fell 8.8% and iron and steel another 6.2%. Chemicals exported 8% less, and the collapse of 69.5% of medicines stands out.

All in all, the Valencian Community closes the most complicated exercise in recent years as the third most exporting autonomy in Spain, only behind a Catalonia that remains very prominent (66,265 million euros in sales) despite losing 10.3% and the Community of Madrid, where they fell 6.2% (29,254). Andalusia, another of the regions that usually compete with the Valencian region for these leading positions, reduced its sales by 12.3%, exporting 27,831 million.

Sales to the United Kingdom fall by 23.8% in the run-up to Brexit

By territories, Valencian exports to the European Union resisted better than those to third countries. There was a 0.9 increase in sales to France, the second destination behind Germany (-5.2%). In the year of Brexit, exports to the United Kingdom plummeted by 23.8%, although it is noteworthy that in December this fall was significantly reduced to 8.1% due to the stockpiling, especially of citrus, by companies Britons for fear of a hard Brexit. Beyond Europe, the US market resisted with more solvency than the Latin American one. The first sold goods worth 2,698 million (-10.2%) while the second was 1,254.6 million, a decline of 26.3%. Finally, exports to China fell by 17.3%, while they soared 34.7% to Saudi Arabia to reach 334 million.

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Minister Planas guarantees regional exports to the United Kingdom without obstacles against Brexit

The regional president, Fernando López Miras, together with the Minister of Agriculture, Luis Planas
WORRY

Cordiality and good harmony are the guidelines that have marked the meeting of the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Luis Planas, with the President of the Region of Murcia, Fernando López Miras, this Thursday with Brexit and its consequences for Murcian exporters and European aid from the CAP as a backdrop. Planas has announced that everything is ready so that the inspections and phytosanitary controls that Brexit will impose from April 1 after the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union do not imply an economic blow and more bureaucratic burden for exporters and companies of transportation of the Region. It has highlighted the reinforcement of personnel at border inspection points, as well as the simplification of export operations, so that there are no “incidents” in the quality controls of food imported to the United Kingdom.

The Brexit agreement has made it possible to avoid tariff costs for Spanish agri-food exports and the loss of the market. These tariffs amounted to practically a cost of 950 million euros, almost a quarter of the around 4,000 million that Spain exports annually to the United Kingdom, said the minister, who again stressed that the reinforcement of personnel in the customs services within the border controls of Murcia and Cartagena. Since last January 1, with Brexit in force, the collaboration between administrations is working “correctly” to guarantee trade flows.

Regarding United States tariffs, Planas has asked regional exporters for patience with the possible elimination of the tariffs imposed by that country during the Trump administration because he trusts that the negotiation with the responsible positions named Joe Biden will allow them to be withdrawn in the next months. He acknowledged that the recent extension of these tariffs for six more months has caused astonishment in the agricultural sector, but reiterated the need to wait for the new US special representative with whom the European Union will have to negotiate in a process to be confirmed in office. calendar that “takes time.”

Regarding water issues, however, he did want to highlight the proposal for the public company Seiasa to be the one that manages with the irrigation communities the aid for the transformation of irrigation, and he promised that the 58 Murcian projects will be analyzed in detail together with those that practically all the autonomies have sent.

López Miras highlighted the message of “tranquility” that he transmitted about the situation of exports to the United Kingdom with Brexit for a region with 483,000 tons of fruit and vegetables, 225,000 tons of processed agricultural products and 750 million euros export turnover, with 1,400 trucks every week in the busiest peaks.

Miras demanded that the minister take into account that specific weight in the distribution of European funds, taking into account that there are 563 million euros for policies to improve agriculture and, specifically, irrigation systems, for which they have already presented 58 projects for more than two hundred million euros. In this sense, he demanded “justice” to distribute the transfers that arrive from Europe and that, in the case of this sector, would reach almost 1,000 million euros for the entire national territory.

The minister praised the products of the “Huerta de Europa” because behind it is observed the professional and rigorous work of its producers and farmers, and underlined the vitality, strength and competitiveness of the entire sector.

He recalled that at the end of last November, national exports reached 55,400 million euros, which represented a growth in the middle of the pandemic of 4.7 percent, but in the Region of Murcia this increase was 7.7 percent, with 5,600 millions.

Lastly, the minister announced that as of January 1, 2023, direct aid to organizations of fruit and vegetable producers (OPFH) will be progressively “decoupled”, which the ministry will propose next May at autonomies. At the same time, he indicated that the cut flower and the ornamental plant will be treated in the PAC with a specific program “so that they have the support and recognition they deserve.”

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68 percent fewer exports from Great Britain to the EU

Normalization of freight traffic – Brexit

Trucks line up in the border control area of ​​the port of Dover.


(Photo: dpa)

Berlin, London According to a survey last January, exports through British ports to the EU fell by 68 percent compared to the same period last year. This is the result of a survey by the logistics association Road Haulage Association of its international members, about which the “Observer” reported on Sunday. Association chief Richard Burnett had drawn the British government’s attention to the problems and complained that despite numerous warnings, his industry had been largely ignored for months.

Although the corona pandemic is also causing significantly less trade, the association blames the formalities and controls created by Brexit for the drastic decline. Quite a few trucks were left empty on the way back to the continent, as many British companies temporarily or completely suspended their exports to the EU. The approximately 10,000 customs employees who have to deal with the new formalities are just a fifth of the staff that the logistics association estimates would be necessary.

According to the report, the British Ports Association confirmed the massive slump in exports. The government, however, rejected the number: “We do not recognize this number of exports. Thanks to the hard work of logisticians and companies to prepare for the changes, the disruption at the border has so far been minimal and freight movements are close to normal despite the Covid-19 pandemic, “said a government spokesman.

Long waiting times for truck drivers

Since the entry into force of the new trade agreement between the EU and Great Britain, the movement of goods between the island and the continent has been jerky: According to the industry association, many truck drivers are often stuck on the British side for hours because many processes, especially customs clearance, have to be rehearsed. “It has already happened that trucks loaded with English goods for the continent were routed back to the sender because customs clearance at the GB / EU border was not ensured,” criticized the Federal Association of Freight Transport, Logistics and Disposal (BGL).

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Small and medium-sized companies in particular would have great problems keeping track of the new regulations and complying with them. “We also have a chronic shortage of customs agents in Great Britain,” said the BGL Managing Director, Dirk Engelhardt, of the German Press Agency. Such agents usually take care of the customs formalities for their customers.

Truck drivers who wanted to return from Great Britain to the EU would have to wait 12 to 36 hours in the British hinterland, especially while waiting for the customs papers, Engelhardt said. There is also a risk of traffic chaos due to longer handling times for thousands of trucks at the border. According to BGL, additional documents are now due for animal and vegetable products, which are also not cheap. “Some transport companies are now rejecting trips to Great Britain because the uncertainties on the way back are too great.”

Even large logistics groups such as the Deutsche Bahn subsidiary DB Schenker had recently felt the effects of Brexit and the trade agreement that was now agreed. In January, Schenker temporarily stopped accepting consignments from the EU to Great Britain because most of the deliveries were missing documents and the employees could not keep track of them. Many retailers on both sides have already stopped deliveries from or to the EU.

In the medium term he is assuming that for all these reasons the freight prices will rise significantly, “by up to 50 percent,” said Engelhardt from the BGL. When asked, foreign trade experts assume that at least the problems with customs clearance will be resolved in the medium term. Such start-up difficulties are normal, according to the Federal Association of Wholesale Foreign Trade Services (BGA).

Trade experts pointed out that it was not yet clear what part of the corona pandemic would have and what problems could be resolved over time and stimulate trade again. In addition, the freight volume cannot be equated with the value of the exported goods. The trade problems could intensify in the summer, however: Great Britain will not want to control imports from the EU until July, until then a transition phase will apply.

With the end of the Brexit transition phase, trade between Great Britain and the EU has become considerably more complicated: Although most products are not subject to tariffs thanks to the trade pact negotiated at the last minute, forms and health checks lead to considerable delays and uncertainties for companies.

More: Northern Ireland is once again the focus on the Brexit issue – and the EU is on the defensive

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Empty trucks due to customs bureaucracy: Great Britain hardly ever exports to the EU

Empty trucks due to customs bureaucracy
Great Britain hardly exports to the EU anymore

Brexit opponents feel confirmed: The movement of goods between Great Britain and the EU is not only stalling – according to the association, there are hardly any exports from the island to the mainland. Experts warn that the situation could become even more dramatic in summer. London rejects that.

According to a survey last January, exports from British ports to the EU fell by 68 percent compared to the same period last year. That emerges from a survey among the international members of the logistics association Road Haulage Association, about which the “Observer” reported. Association chief Richard Burnett had drawn the British government’s attention to the problems and complained that despite numerous warnings, his industry had been largely ignored for months.

Although the corona pandemic is also causing significantly less trade, the association blames the formalities and controls created by Brexit for the drastic decline. Quite a few trucks were left empty on the way back to the continent, as many British companies temporarily or completely suspended their exports to the EU. The approximately 10,000 customs employees who have to deal with the new formalities are just a fifth of the staff that the logistics association estimates would be necessary.

London: “We don’t recognize the number”

According to the report, the British Ports Association confirmed the massive slump in exports. The government, on the other hand, rejected the figure: “We do not recognize this number of exports. Thanks to the hard work of logisticians and companies to prepare for the changes, disruptions at the border have so far been minimal and freight movements have been minimal despite the Covid-19 Pandemic close to normal, “said a government spokesman.

Trade experts pointed out that it was not yet clear what part of the corona pandemic would have and what problems could be resolved over time and stimulate trade again. In addition, the freight volume cannot be equated with the value of the exported goods.

The trade problems could get worse in the summer, however: Great Britain will not control imports from the EU until July, until then a transition phase will apply.

With the end of the Brexit transition phase, trade between Great Britain and the EU has become considerably more complicated: Although most products are not subject to tariffs thanks to the trade pact negotiated at the last minute, forms and health checks lead to considerable delays and uncertainties for companies.

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They demand urgent measures to avoid the collapse of Murcian exports to the United Kingdom

Business and export organizations together with the regional government demand from the central Executive more information and personnel to face the mandatory phytosanitary controls that trucks must pass

LETICIA G. ÁLVAREZ. Murcia

The export sector of the Region, in the hands of the Murcian Government, demands urgent measures from the central Executive to avoid the collapse of exports to the United Kingdom due to the phytosanitary controls that Brexit brings. They want more information, clear work mechanisms, more staff and unification of quality controls. Every week about 2,000 trucks leave the Region of Murcia bound for the United Kingdom.

And as of April 1, it will be mandatory for each of these trucks to present a phytosanitary certificate and a pre-notification of the cargo at destination. There is not enough staff to take on so much work without causing an unaffordable collapse, as explained by the Minister of Agriculture, Antonio Luengo.

Regional president Fernando López Miras met this Friday with representatives of business and export organizations to join forces and demand measures from the ministry. One of them, that accesses be streamlined, especially for trucks that transport perishable products, as requested by José María Albarracín, president of Croem.

López Miras has sent the ministry a letter in which he collects all the demands of the sector, asks for agility in the adoption of measures and offers personnel from the Ministry of Agriculture in case it is necessary.

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Brexit triggers 200% customs activity at the Irun border crossing

The United Kingdom accounts for 60% of declared exports, while the rest correspond mainly to Ukraine, Serbia and Turkey

Customs headquarters on the ground floor of the Zaisa tower, in Irun, which has registered a multiplied activity since Brexit.
Customs headquarters on the ground floor of the Zaisa tower, in Irun, which has registered a multiplied activity since Brexit. / LUSA
Fernando Segura
FERNANDO SEGURA

Thursday, 28 January 2021, 06:33