Ah - I see my error. We are defining drinking problems differently.
It's a catch all phrase here. It doesn't just include alcoholism or abuse rising from that. That is a wiring defect in the drinker's brain. It also includes binge drinking, vomiting in the streets, peeing in someone's bird bath (don't ask, the magistrate was kind), pub fights, hassle on the street (young and stupid is bearable. Young, stupid and drunk - all bets are off).
In general though, countries that have a more relaxed approach to alcohol do tend to have fewer serious drink related problems. I know Italy and France does from personal experience, and your experience suggests the same is true for Uruguay.