La Paz/Vienna, 1 September 2021 - With funding from the European Union, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the government of the Plurinational State of Bolivia presented yesterday in La Paz the Coca Crop Monitoring Survey Report 2020. This report shows a 15 percent increase in the area under coca cultivation compared to 2019. The area cultivated with coca increased by 3,900 hectares (ha) from 25,500 ha in 2019 to 29,400 ha in 2020.
According to the Report, the Yungas regions of La Paz, the Cochabamba Tropics (which includes producing areas in Santa Cruz and Beni), and the North of La Paz accounted for 62 percent, 36 percent, and 2 percent respectively of the coca cultivation in the country. Through the interpretation of very high-resolution satellite images, UNODC recorded an increase in the area under coca cultivation in the three coca growing regions: in the Yungas region of La Paz, the increase was 12 percent to 18,302 ha; in the Tropic of Cochabamba, an increase of 21 percent to 10,606 ha was recorded; and in the Northern region of La Paz, the area under coca cultivation increased by 9 percent to 510 ha of coca cultivation.
The highest increase in coca cultivation was recorded in the Sud Yungas province of the Yungas region of La Paz, reaching 11,934 ha of cultivation in 2020, 1,560 ha additional compared to 2019. In the Cochabamba Tropics region, the Carrasco Province registered an increase of 807 ha, reaching a total of 4,649 ha of coca cultivation in 2020.
The Government of the Plurinational State of Bolivia reported a decrease in the rationalized/eradicated area between 2019 and 2020, from 9,205 ha to 2,177 ha. In 2020, 64 percent of the rationalized/eradicated area corresponds to the Cochabamba Tropics, 19 percent to the Yungas of La Paz and 17 percent to the departments of Santa Cruz and Beni.
Since 2019 UNODC has been validating the coca crop rationalization/eradication (R/E) information provided by the Bolivian government. In 2020, UNODC accompanied the rationalization/eradication tasks of 131 ha out of a total of 2,177 ha of rationalized/eradicated coca cultivation reported by the Bolivian government.
The report also recorded the presence of coca cultivation in 6 of the 22 Protected Areas at the national level. In these areas, 454 ha of area under coca cultivation was identified, located within the three coca growing regions. The National Park most affected by coca cultivation was Carrasco (163 ha), followed by Amboró (87 ha), Madidi (63 ha), Apolobamba (59 ha), Cotapata (55 ha) and Isiboro Sécure (27 ha). The National Parks that registered a decrease were Isiboro Sécure (4%) and Madidi (3%). Within the areas destined to regularize the agrarian property rights to avoid new settlements (sanitized areas) inside Isiboro Sécure (Polygon 7) and Carrasco National Parks (inside the red line), 2,315 ha of coca cultivation areas were identified.
These figures reflect the main findings of the latest Coca Crop Monitoring Report in Bolivia, carried out in the framework of the UNODC Support Program, financed by the European Union Delegation in Bolivia, for the Implementation of the Action Plan of the Strategy to
Combat Drug Trafficking and Reduce Surplus Coca Crops of the Plurinational State of Bolivia