34 large farmland transactions were presented to the Institute of Colonization in the first half of 2016. These transactions led to a total investment of 248 Million US dollar. All transactions of properties over 500 hectares and a CONEAT index of 100 or more need to be presented to this authority. This does not include the transactions of smaller plots of land. It gives the most accurate indication of current values for commercial farmland in Uruguay.
The total surface transferred was 61.570 hectares. The average price per hectare is 4.027 USD or 1.630 USD per acre. These figures show an increase in farmland area, total investment and number of transactions as compared to the first half of 2015. However the first half of 2015 the average price per hectare was 5.378 USD which implies a decrease of no less than 25% in 2016.
Transactions were done in different regions of Uruguay without a strong preference. It is clear that premium cropland in southern Uruguay maintains a high value well above 10.000 USD per hectare.
It is also striking that there were 5 important transactions carried out by large international landholding companies/funds with tracts from 5.000 to 8.000 hectares per transaction. These transactions referred to properties with mixed operations combining crop farming and cattle breeding.
These international agri funds are motivated sellers who are more likely to accept a discount on their prices. Their properties were sold in order to liquidate assets and rebalance the finances of these funds.
Upon request we can provide more details about regional differences and soil quality.