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Uruguay .:. Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform
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Voluntary National Review 2017

*Originally submitted in Spanish and translated to English by the Secretariat

Transformation of social protection approach

Uruguay has made significant progress in recent years with the level of wellbeing of the population, as evidenced by a sustained decline in poverty, the near-disappearance of extreme poverty, and a considerable reduction in multidimensional poverty.

Since 2005, levels of poverty have been in steady decline. The determining factors of that decline have been economic recovery and the implementation of social policies focusing on reducing poverty, improving income distribution and encouraging social inclusion.

The social policies include the following:

(a) Establishment and institutional consolidation of the Ministry of Social Development;

(b) The Emergency Plan and Equity Plan;

(c) A return to the model of agreement across sectors of society and tripartite wage councils;

(d) Presentation to, and adoption by, Parliament of worker-protection laws, notably including protection for female domestic workers and protection of rural workers, which has helped to reduce informal employment, increase social security coverage and formalize the labour market;

(e) Health-care reform: the National Integrated Health System, whose principles include universalization of coverage;

(f) Education: increasing coverage from birth to age five;

(g) Implementation of the Uruguay Crece Contigo (Uruguay grows with you) programme, a national public programme aimed at consolidating an integral system of support for early childhood.

Uruguay has adopted a series of public policies taking an integral view of human rights:

(a) Rights of children and adolescents (in which Uruguay plays an international role);

(b) The gender perspective included in a number of public policies: quota for representation of women in various spheres;

(c) Legislation on sexual and reproductive health rights.

The health of the population of Uruguay has been improving in recent years. However, non-communicable diseases remain a source of concern. At the seventy-first session of the General Assembly, the President of Uruguay called for a global partnership for health and life.

Transformation of the approach to production and the environment

(a) Design and implementation of the system for innovation and scientific and technical development (establishment of the National Innovation and Research Agency);

(b) New approach to energy and self-sufficiency, meaning that the old approach based on oil (and the economic dependence that that involved) would be replaced with an approach based on clean and renewable energy sources (mainly water and wind);

(c) Diversification of exports, both in terms of exportable output and in terms of export destinations;

(d) An increase in investment in order to increase the output capacity of the country, and generate employment and income;

(e) Design and implementation of the National System for the Transformation of Production;

(f) Digital inclusion for the entire population.

Transformación de la matriz de protección social:

En los últimos años, Uruguay ha tenido un avance significativo en el nivel de bienestar social de la población, que se observa en la caída sostenida de la pobreza, la casi desaparición de la indigencia y una considerable reducción de la pobreza multidimensional.

Desde 2005, los niveles de pobreza comienzan a disminuir persistentemente, factores determinantes son, la recuperación económica, la implementación de políticas sociales que buscan reducir la pobreza, mejorar la distribución del ingreso y fomentar la inclusión social.

Se destacan las siguientes políticas sociales:

  • Creación y consolidación institucional del Ministerio de Desarrollo Social (MIDES)
  • Plan de Emergencia y Plan de Equidad.
  • Reinstauración del modelo de concertación social y consejos de salarios tripartito
  • Presentación y aprobación parlamentaria de leyes de protección de los trabajadores. En particular, inclusión de trabajadoras domésticas y protección de trabajadores rurales.
  • Contribuye a la reducción de la informalidad, aumentando la cobertura de la seguridad social y la formalización del mercado de trabajo.
  • Reforma de la Salud: Sistema Nacional Integrado de Salud, con principios que incluyen la universalización de la cobertura de la salud.
  • Educación: aumento en la cobertura de 0 a 5 años.
  • Implementación del Programa Uruguay Crece Contigo, política pública de cobertura nacional, que apunta a consolidar un sistema de protección integral a la primera infancia.

Uruguay ha adoptado una serie de políticas públicas con perspectiva integral de Derechos Humanos:

  • Derechos de niños/as y adolescentes (rol de Uruguay a nivel internacional).
  • Perspectiva de Género, inclusión en diversas políticas públicas: cuota de representación de mujeres en distintos ámbitos.
  • Ley de Derechos en salud sexual y reproductiva.

La situación sanitaria de la población uruguaya viene evolucionando favorablemente en los últimos años. Sin embargo, las enfermedades no transmisibles siguen siendo de gran preocupación para los uruguayos. Nuestro Presidente convocó en la 71º Asamblea General ONU a una alianza mundial por la salud y la vida.

Transformación de la matriz productiva y de medio ambiente:
  • Diseño e implantación del sistema de innovación y desarrollo científico técnico (creación de la Agencia Nacional de Innovación e Investigación).
  • Cambio de la matriz energética y autoabastecimiento. Implica la sustitución de la vieja matriz energética basada en el petróleo (con la dependencia económica que ello implica) por otra basada en energías limpias y renovables (principalmente hidráulica y eólica).
  • Diversificación de la oferta exportadora tanto a nivel de la producción exportable como de los destinos de la exportación.
  • Aumento de la tasa de inversión que permite ampliar la capacidad productiva del país y la generación de empleo e ingresos.
  • Diseño e implantación del Sistema Nacional de Transformación Productiva
  • Inclusión Digital de toda la población.
Focal point
Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores del Uruguay
Direccion de Medio Ambiente
Colonia 1206
Documents & Reports

National Reports
Report Topics covered Process
National Report - Uruguay Rio+20;

Partnerships & Commitments
The below is a listing of all partnership initiatives and voluntary commitments where Uruguay is listed as a partner in the Partnerships for SDGs online platform.
Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC)

The best opportunity to slow the rate of near-term warming globally and in sensitive regions such as the Arctic is by cutting emissions of short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) – most notably methane, black carbon and some hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs). Widespread reductions, which complement the need for aggressive global action on carbon dioxide, contribute significantly to the goal of limiting warming to less than two degrees. Reducing SLCPs can also advance national priorities such as protecting air quality and public health, promoting food security, enhancing energy efficiency, and alleviat...[more]

111 Partners, 50 State and REIO, 16 IGO and 45 NGO partners (as of April 2016). Full list:
Action Network
Sustainable Development Goals
IHO Hydrography Capacity Building Programme for Coastal States

The IHO capacity building programme seeks to assess and advise on how countries can best meet their international obligations and serve their own best interests by providing appropriate hydrographic and nautical charting services. Such services directly support safety of navigation, safety of life at sea, efficient sea transportation and the wider use of the seas and oceans in a sustainable way, including the protection of the marine environment, coastal zone management, fishing, marine resource exploration and exploitation, maritime boundary delimitation, maritime defence and security, and o...[more]

International Hydrographic Organization (IGO); 87 IHO Member States (Governments); International Maritime Organization (UN); World Meteorological Organization (UN); International Association of Marine Aids to Navigation and Lighthouse Authorities (NGO)
Action Network
Sustainable Development Goals