Southern Exposure

Desde as Entranhas dos Labirintos Latinos.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

2003 Coca Cultivation Estimates for Bolivia and Peru

US Department of State

Press Statement
Richard Boucher, Spokesman
Washington, DC
November 17, 2003

The United States Government has completed the 2003 annual estimates of coca
cultivation in Peru and Bolivia. The estimates -- produced with survey-sampling
techniques and satellite imagery -- indicate that overall coca cultivation
levels continue to be lower for Peru and Bolivia than in the past - between
50,000 and 60,000 hectares (or 123,500 and 148,200 acres), compared to 163,900
hectares (406,470 acres) in 1995. Even with sustained eradication efforts in
Colombia there has not been an increase in cultivation in the other two major
coca cultivation countries.

In Peru, survey figures show a net 15% decrease in coca cultivation in 2003.
Overall, net coca cultivation dropped from 36,000 hectares in 2002 to 31,150
hectares in 2003. Nevertheless, cultivation in the Apurimac-Ene and Monzon
valleys -- traditional growing areas where plantation-style plots can be found
-- remained steady. These areas represent 67% of the illicit coca produced in

In Bolivia, there was an overall increase of over 4,000 hectares (10,900 acres)
to 28,450 hectares (70,300 acres) of coca cultivation, or 17% above 2002 s
estimate. While cultivation in the Chapare region, the historic illicit coca
cultivation zone, fell by 15%, cultivation in the Yungas, grew by 26%. This is
the challenge that faces Bolivia, as coca in excess of what is needed for the
legal, traditional market ends up feeding the illegal cocaine market.

It is important to note that eradication is only part of our bilateral
counter-drug strategy in Peru and Bolivia. Together we are making major
progress in both the interdiction of drugs and providing effective alternative
development. We will continue to work with the governments of Bolivia and Peru
on the continued challenges faced to fight the production and flow of drugs.

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