This paper addresses the current status and future research and development perspectives associated with technologies to harness offshore renewable energy, including offshore wind, waves, tides, ocean currents, and thermal and salinity gradient, in South America (SA). It focuses on five countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Uruguay. At first, a comprehensive survey presents the number of scientific papers classified based on the resource to show the tendency and importance of such subjects in the academic community. Each country’s electricity matrix and grid connection are shown to understand the region’s renewable source participation situation. The potential of offshore renewable resources is addressed by considering the published technical papers in scientific journals. The main conflicts and synergies associated with ocean space utilization are presented by considering the exclusive economic zone of each country. The status of the regulatory frameworks to promote and development of offshore renewable energies is presented. Two sections are dedicated to presenting the active, decommissioned and planned projects, research groups and laboratory infrastructures to develop the technologies. The last section discusses the future perspectives on the development of this sector in SA. It is observed that SA, with more than 25,000 km of coastline, has a great potential for offshore renewable energy; however, so far, these resources have not been explored commercially. Larger investment in the sector, establishing an adequate legal framework and deploying full-scale demonstration projects at sea are necessary for the commercialization of such technologies in SA.