Economic growth in Uruguay is expected to reach close to 3 per cent in 2018. Despite subdued growth in the agricultural sector, this expansion will be driven by strong manufacturing exports. The business environment is strengthened by a stable economic and political environment, strong bank supervision and high levels of international reserves. Total trade represents about half of Uruguay's GDP. As a member of the Mercosur economic block, Uruguay has strong trade ties with neighbour countries, however, it continues to seek trade diversification with other markets outside the region.