The fever for buying at low prices in Argentina infects Uruguayans | International

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Long lines of cars wait to cross from Uruguay to the Argentinian border city of Gualeguaychú. Visitors expect to return loaded with groceries, medicines and take advantage of services such as aesthetic clinics at a fraction of what they would cost in their country of origin.

For months now, Uruguayans seeking to save money have made the scenario of crossing the border to stock up common. For the border cities of Concordia and Colón, foreign buyers have been a relief in the context of rapid inflation and low wages.

On the opposite side of the border, there is not such a flattering picture. The Uruguayan departments of Salto, Paysandú, Río Negro and Soriano have been severely affected by this acquisitive migration. Figures from the municipal authorities indicate that at least 170 businesses in the area have closed since the beginning of 2023.

Despite the economic differences, commercial traffic between the two countries seems to be increasing. As a provisional measure to mitigate the impact, the Uruguayan authorities have set a limit of 5 kilograms for products purchased abroad to enter the country.

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