Newsbrief: UN Predicts Cocaine Price Increase, Cites Colombia "Success" 3/18/05

Drug War Chronicle, recent top items

more...

recent blog posts "In the Trenches" activist feed

SUBSCRIBE TODAY!!!


https://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle-old/379/cocaineprices.shtml

In an interview with the Associated Press Monday, the top United Nations anti-drug official in Colombia predicted that cocaine prices in the United States and Europe will rise next year because US-sponsored aerial fumigation of coca crops there has resulted in significant reductions in the harvest. Colombia produces more than three-quarters of the world's cocaine, according to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

coca seedlings
Critics of the US approach in Colombia have cited stable cocaine prices as evidence that six years of effort and hundreds of millions of dollars have failed to make a dent in global cocaine supplies. But 2004 was a record-breaking year in Colombia's coca and cocaine repression efforts. The Colombian government reported 340,000 acres of coca destroyed, almost 150 tons of cocaine seized, and more than a thousand clandestine cocaine processing labs destroyed.

"Considering Colombia supplies 80% of the world cocaine market, we think prices are going to rise starting in 2006," said Sandro Calvani, director of the UNODC in Colombia.

It hasn't happened yet, though, as US Southern Command head General Bantz Craddock told the House Armed Services Committee Tuesday. "Why there isn't a price increase in cocaine, I don't know," he said. "It's a mystery to me."

Calvani had a possible explanation that also serves as an out in case the anticipated price increase fails to materialize. Drug traffickers have been storing stocks of cocaine for years, he said, and may be able to absorb the higher production costs arising from eradication and enforcement. "These warehouses allow them to have enough to satisfy the market for two years," Calvani said. "So when the availability drops in Santa Marta or Barranquilla, there is no lack of cocaine the next week in New York."

He also implicitly endorsed the US-backed use of aerial fumigation to destroy coca crops. That effort has been widely criticized because it is indiscriminate -- the sprays also destroy other crops nearby -- and because the herbicide has also reportedly caused illness in humans and livestock and damaged the environment.

Although armed groups may pressure peasants to grow more coca to compensate for that lost to spraying, said Calvani, such tactics may not work. "Aerial fumigation does not ask for permission from the armed groups. It destroys the crops whether they like it or not," Calvani said. Meanwhile, coca production is reportedly on the increase again in Bolivia. Production there was up 18%, Craddock said.

-- END --
Link to Drug War Facts
Please make a generous donation to support Drug War Chronicle in 2007!          

PERMISSION to reprint or redistribute any or all of the contents of Drug War Chronicle (formerly The Week Online with DRCNet is hereby granted. We ask that any use of these materials include proper credit and, where appropriate, a link to one or more of our web sites. If your publication customarily pays for publication, DRCNet requests checks payable to the organization. If your publication does not pay for materials, you are free to use the materials gratis. In all cases, we request notification for our records, including physical copies where material has appeared in print. Contact: StoptheDrugWar.org: the Drug Reform Coordination Network, P.O. Box 18402, Washington, DC 20036, (202) 293-8340 (voice), (202) 293-8344 (fax), e-mail [email protected]. Thank you.

Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of the DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

Issue #379 -- 3/18/05

Drug War Chronicle, recent top items

more...

recent blog posts "In the Trenches" activist feed

SUBSCRIBE TODAY!!!

Editorial: How to Launch a Nationwide Drug Menace | Alaska Measure to Recriminalize Marijuana Headed for Hearings Next Week | The UN Vienna Meeting: Glass Half Empty or Glass Half Full? | Marijuana Regulation Efforts Moving Forward in Nevada and Vermont | Marijuana Law Enforcement Costs More than $7 Billion a Year -- and Doesn't Work, Says New Report | Coasters to Stop the Drug War | Events and Conferences Coming Up for Drug Reformers -- Come Out and Be a Part of It | Newsbrief: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories | Newsbrief: US Drug War Hurts Women, Says New Report | Newsbrief: Welfare Bill Amended to Cut Funding to States That Fail to Drug Test Welfare Recipients, But None Currently Do | Newsbrief: Police in Missouri Town Seek to Overturn Marijuana Reform Ordinance | Newsbrief: Heroin Maintenance Study Now Underway in Vancouver | Newsbrief: Vancouver Sun Says Legalize It | Newsbrief: UN Predicts Cocaine Price Increase, Cites Colombia "Success" | Newsbrief: European Drug Think-Tank Calls for Legalizing Afghan Opium Crop -- Afghan Government Reaction Mixed | Newsbrief: Crackdown in Sao Paulo's "Crackland" Stirs Criticism | Media Scan: Tony Papa on Artists Against the Drug War for Alternet, Slate on the WTO and Marijuana Laws, Vancouver Sun on Marijuana Legalization, UK Overdosing on Opiates Article | This Week in History | MAPS Benefit Auction | The Reformer's Calendar


This issue -- main page
This issue -- single-file printer version
Drug War Chronicle -- main page
Chronicle archives
Out from the Shadows HEA Drug Provision Drug War Chronicle Perry Fund DRCNet en EspaŮol Speakeasy Blogs About Us Home
Why Legalization? NJ Racial Profiling Archive Subscribe Donate DRCNet em PortuguÍs Latest News Drug Library Search
special friends links: SSDP - Flex Your Rights - IAL - Drug War Facts

StoptheDrugWar.org: the Drug Reform Coordination Network (DRCNet)
1623 Connecticut Ave., NW, 3rd Floor, Washington DC 20009 Phone (202) 293-8340 Fax (202) 293-8344 [email protected]