Paraguay is the world’s largest exporter of organic sugar, second-largest producer and exporter of stevia, sixth-largest soy exporter, and eighth-largest beef exporter.
Paraguay’s efforts to improve agricultural and livestock production present opportunities for basic inputs, such as animal genetics. Farmers and ranchers are aware that using quality inputs is a key factor in their operations’ profitability and have been adopting advanced production practices, providing opportunities for fertilizers, pest control, and farm equipment.
In late 2013, the World Organization for Animal Health reinstated Paraguay’s status as a country free of Foot-and-Mouth Disease with vaccination. This status paves the way for Paraguay to increase beef exports, creating opportunities for U.S. meat and poultry processing equipment. Parts for processing equipment are also a good prospect for U.S. exports, given the need to repair existing machines. In 2019, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) began a re-certification process for Paraguayan beef. If Paraguay completes the re-certification process successfully, USDA will authorize export of Paraguayan beef to the United States.
Processed foods and high-value items, including processed fruits, vegetables, and beverages, also show promise for U.S. exporters. Fresh fruits and vegetables have weaker demand, but frozen and canned products have gained wide acceptance for their convenience and uniform quality.
Paraguay has the potential to become an important player in the world’s biofuel sector. The government has expressed interest in biofuels and passed legislation to promote biofuels production and consumption. Until recently, Paraguayan firms focused on sugar-based ethanol production for local market and export, and on biodiesel production by small rural producers for local market. In 2019, the Paraguayan government granted a Free Zone regime to a project that will produce renewable diesel and aviation kerosene using hydrotreated vegetable oil on a large scale, utilizing U.S. technology. Biodiesel and ethanol producers will focus on increasing production and expanding exports. Plant construction projects and production expansion will present sales opportunities for U.S. suppliers of building and construction materials and biofuels processing machinery.
Paraguay is the world’s second-largest producer of stevia after China. Paraguay has the potential to be a global provider of stevia, creating opportunities to sell new and used processing machinery. The most important market for stevia is currently the food and beverage industry, where buyers employ it as a sweetener and a flavoring agent. Other important stevia markets include health and tea.
Farmers and ranchers are aware that using quality inputs is a key factor in their operations’ profitability and have been adopting advanced production practices. Tractors and accessories, harvesting machinery, bulldozers, backhoes, and excavators are usually in high demand, depending on the prospects for a successful harvest. Paraguay is among the few countries in Latin America that permits used machinery imports. Competition from other exporting countries is strong, and U.S. exporters must compete with lower prices and provide good follow-on service to be successful.
There could be an opportunity for irrigation projects in Paraguay, including in the Chaco region in the western half of the country. Opportunities for sales of fertilizer, seeds, and other products remain strong.
Paraguayan Importers Chamber
Paraguayan-American Chamber of Commerce
U.S. Embassy Asuncion