1) Geographical Location: ReducingCoca cultivation in Bolivia, Colombia, and Peru,19982) Chronicle of the event: Coca, the raw material for cocaine, is grown in the countriesof Bolivia, Colombia and Peru. Regional efforts to eradicate cultivation ofthis crop have been successful in those three years.
Despite the increasingdemand of cocaine and coca, the governments successfully reduced the supply ona large scale.3) Breakdown of the event: Nearly all of the coca cultivation in Colombia isin remote regions outside authorities control and often under the influence ofguerrilla and paramilitary forces. This makes eradication and prohibitionoperations difficult.
Moreover, without the promise of security in thecountryside, the government cannot deliver adequate development programs toprovide legit income to growers who abandon coca cultivation. The growth ofColombian drug cultivation has added substantial power to the guerrilla andparamilitary groups, who protect and control various aspects of the drugindustry. Despite these challenges, the Colombian Police (CNP) report that theydestroyed more than 60,000 hectares of illicit crops in 1998. The Colombianauthorities has formed a joint task force with people from all the military servicesand the CNP to escalate operations in guerrilla-controlled regions.
The CNPalso inducted a general aviation aircraft control system, which resulted in theseizure of 54 trafficker aircrafts in 1998.4) Consequences of the event: Coca cultivation in Peru decreased by 56 percent from115,300 hectares in 1995 to 51,000 hectares in 1998. Cocaine productiondeclined from 460 MT to 240 MT over the same period in Peru while in Bolivia productiondeclined from 255 MT in 1994 to 150 MT in 1998.5) Policy Remedy: Governments of these countries actually tried toattain such a state of demand and supply.
This success is associated to manyfactors, including political will in both countries to counter the illegal drugtrade, the regional air injunction campaign that targeted drug-laden aircraftflying between Peru and Colombia, diminished strength of insurgent forces inPeru, and alternate crop programs. The fact that coca leaf prices dropped morethan 40 percent in Peru over the past three years suggests that the operationis successful. Comment: By increasingcapabilities of judicial systems, law-enforcement agencies, security forces andencouraging greater regional cooperation, implementation of policies can curbillicit coca cultivation is possible.