Latin America and the Caribbean 2019

Policies for Competitive SMEs in the Pacific Alliance and Participating South American countries

image of Latin America and the Caribbean 2019

The SME Policy Index is a benchmarking tool that assists emerging economies in monitoring and evaluating progress in policies that support small and medium-sized enterprises. This first application of the Index methodology in the Latin American and Caribbean region covers the four Pacific Alliance member countries (Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru) and three participating South American countries (Argentina, Ecuador, Uruguay). Divided into seven policy dimensions, this report assesses the strengths and weaknesses that exist in different areas of SME policy design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation, and provides guidance to policy makers in identifying policy areas for future reform according to international good practices. This report is a joint effort between the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF) and the OECD through its Latin America and the Caribbean Regional Programme (LACRP), in co-operation with the Latin American and Caribbean Economic System (SELA) and the “Foundation for the Strategic Analysis and Development of the SME” (FAEDPYME).

English Also available in: Spanish


Uruguay performs relatively well in this assessment, outperforming the LA7 average for the assessment dimensions related to business and entrepreneurial development services (Dimension 4) and access to market and internationalisation (Dimension 7). This is due to the large offer of SME support services currently available in Uruguay for these dimensions, as well as their delivery by specialised agencies. However, Uruguay never reaches the level of a top LA7 performer, demonstrating room for peer learning, especially in the area of access to finance (Dimension 3).While Uruguay does not have an explicit SME strategy, it is in the process of linking its SME support programmes to the country’s First National Plan for Productive Transformation and Competitiveness (2017-2021). It has made good progress in the strategy elaboration and planning phase, but is still in an ongoing phase of developing a new institutional architecture to support the implementation of this Plan and strengthening it through the introduction of effective monitoring and evaluation (M&E) mechanisms.

English Also available in: Spanish

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