Uruguay: Another Country That Kept the COVID Doomsday Cult at Bay, Applied the Swedish Model to Great Success

Declined to sacrifice its future to panicky shysters

We are not talking enough about Uruguay. That small South American country boasts impressive results in its handling of the coronavirus. It is also signaling that it wants to prosper and that it understands more freedom might be the way to go about it.

Under president Luis Lacalle Pou, Uruguay has suffered a very low number of deaths from coronavirus (23 as of June 15) and the number of confirmed cases (848) is small. At no point did the government decree a national quarantine, preferring instead to let individual responsibility, guided by accurate and transparent information that originated from a team of scientists and experts, do the trick.

Rather than shut down the economy (80 percent of it kept going) and send the police or the military to arrest people, as was done in some other countries, the authorities, in coordination with civil society, put an emphasis on testing (proportionally, they are only behind South Korea in the number of tests as a percentage of confirmed cases) and briefly isolating those who had Covid-19. The external borders were shut, but the internal borders were kept open.

Uruguay’s government made it clear it would not fund its fiscal response to the trying circumstances through money-printing, large debts or higher taxation, but through reductions in public spending, particularly the money paid to politicians. There was pressure from within the governing coalition and the powerful left-wing opposition known as Frente Amplio (Broad Front) to engage in huge fiscal profligacy and make businesses pay for it, but President Lacalle explained that it was from private enterprise and capital that the economy would come back and that strangling businesses with regulations and more taxes would hinder that effort.

Wasting little time, Uruguay has announced a campaign to attract foreigners by making it much easier for them to become a fiscal resident of their country. Those who take up residence in Uruguay will not pay taxes for five years, after which time they will not have to pay a wealth tax on their foreign holdings and will only pay an income tax of 12 percent on the gains obtained from those assets. The fear in neighboring Argentina, where a demagogic government is destroying an economy that was already in dire straits, is that 44 million Argentines—the entire population—will settle across the border. (Uruguay has a population of only 3.4 million.)

Source: Independent Institute

  1. cechas vodobenikov says

    Uruguayan are culturally the same as Argentinians—far different from Bolivians, Chileans, Colombians—even more different from amerikans—civilized peoples with universal health care, where people actually enjoy life

    1. disqus_3BrONUAJno says

      That may be why Doug Casey lives there instead of his preference for Argentina, although I’d guess that economic freedom differences are the crux.

      1. cechas vodobenikov says

        I don’t know Casey—I lived in BA for 8 years, occasionally visited Montevideo—-there is more cultural/intellectual life in BA and the cost of living is 30+% less than in Uruguay….Argentina imposes price controls, adjusted for inflation–not Uruguay….the ferry between BA and Montevideo never requires more than 80 minutes…my flat cost 45 K USD….apts rent 600-700 in central neighborhoods, less in others—symphonies, etc are 10-12 USD except for the expensive seats–teatro colon is one of the best venues I know…the only European city in the Western Hemisphere….if u stay away from the tourist barrios

  2. disqus_3BrONUAJno says

    Uruguay’s requirements exceed my most generous personal worth estimates.

    1. Mateo Oglesby says

      Just go and get residency…not that expensive and they will let you come and go as you can

      1. disqus_3BrONUAJno says

        Anything that exceeds my $1014 a month in Social Security is too expensive for me.
        Doug Casey speaks highly of it, but he can afford to live anywhere he wants.

      2. cechas vodobenikov says

        and if too lazy to obtain resident status one can visit montivdeo every 3 months for a few days and return for another 90 days

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