Economic cycles and redistributive struggle in Uruguay: the case of the institutionality of the agricultural labour markets (2005-2018)

  • Alberto Riella
Keywords: Regulation, agricultural employment market, working conditions, redistributive struggle


This article seeks to study the evolution of wages and working conditions
in Uruguay’s agriculture sector between 2005 and 2018 and its relationship
with the economic performance of the sector in those years. In this
period, there is an important process of regulation of the employment
market that is followed by an economic cycle of growth of the sector between
2005 and 2014 and a second phase from 2015 to 2018 where a contraction
and loss of economic dynamism begins due to the deterioration
of international prices of the main production items. The hypothesis that
guides this work is that the institutional advances achieved in the regulation
of the employment market at the beginning of the period, allow to
reach very positive results in the moments of expansion of the sector but
once a time you enter in a contraction phase increases the redistributive
struggle and a deterioration in the trends of employment market indicators
is beginning to be observed. The conclusion reached is that the rate
of deterioration in these indicators is slow and seems to be contained by
the new regulations that do not allow employers to immediately transfer
the reduction of earnings to employees in the sector, as has happened in
other institutional contexts prior to 2005.