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Colombia Defence and Security Report Q2 2012
Business Monitor International, February 2012, Pages: 80
Leftist parties did well in Colombia’s latest round of regional elections held in late-October 2011. These were the first polls since the election of President Juan Manuel Santos, who is on the centre-right of the Colombian political spectrum. The lead-up to the regional elections were marred by violence, but the results, in which a former leftist guerrilla won a regional seat, may indicate growing political success for the left in Colombian politics.
Retaining one of the largest militaries in South America, the country’s 40-year-old civil war, and actual and potential regional rivalries with its neighbouring states of Venezuela and Brazil, continues to dominate its security agenda. Neither the Marxist-orientated ELN (Ejército de Liberación Nacional/National Liberation Army) and FARC-EP (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia–Ejército del Pueblo/Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia-People’s Army) show any immediate sign of slowing, or halting, their armed campaign against the Colombian government. In fact, the ELN’s campaign appears to have intensified over the past 12 months, following the cessation of in-fighting with the FARC-EP.
The FARC-EP has suffered recent setbacks, including the killing of its commander in November 2011, although it remains capable of performing attacks on civilian and military targets. The government continues to follow a dual track of political negotiations with the FARC-EP, and military action against the group. Inextricably connected with the military campaign against these respective insurgencies is Colombia’s procurement of military equipment. The domestic defence industrial base in Colombia is modest at best. The result of this has been that Bogotá has had to search abroad for defence materiel.
Traditionally, Colombia has made significant purchases of defence equipment from the US, particularly of armoured vehicles and aircraft. That said, the country is now in the process of broadening its supplier base. This has included the purchase of ground attack aircraft from Brazil, and warships from Germany. The country’s military relationship with Israel is also deepening in the form of the supply of aircraft upgrades, tankers and advanced cruise missiles.
Ostensibly, these purchases have been to enhance the Colombian military’s capabilities vis-à-vis the continuing insurgency. However, a side effect of the purchases of this equipment particularly these latter three platforms, are that it provides the country with modest power projection capabilities beyond its borders. This could be a cause for concern in the future, particularly as regards the, at times tense, relationship between Brazil, Venezuela and Colombia. All three of these countries are recapitalising their defence equipment, which is being done in part to address obsolescence issues in existing inventories.
Nonetheless, some commentators have noted that such purchases seem to give the appearance of a regional arms race. That being said, despite the occasional sabre-rattling between the three powers of Colombia, Brazil and Venezuela, it is almost certain that neither country is keen to embark on a regional conflict that could be incalculably costly in terms of blood and money.
Business Monitor International's Colombia Defence and Security Report provides industry professionals and strategists, corporate analysts, defence and security associations, government departments and regulatory bodies with independent forecasts and competitive intelligence on Colombia's defence and security industry.
Colombia Security SWOT
Colombia Defence Industry SWOT
Colombia Political SWOT
Colombia Economic SWOT
Colombia Business Environment SWOT
Global Political Outlook
Landmark Political Events Looming In 2012
Global Flashpoints: Eurozone, Syria, Iran, Afghanistan, Korean Peninsula
Table: Election Timetable, 2012
Wild Cards To Watch
Latin America Security Overview
The Strategic Outlook For The 2010s
Latin America In A Global Context
Challenges And Threats To Security
The Role Of Outside Powers
Key Factors To Consider In The 2010s
Security Risk Analysis
BMI’s Security Ratings
Table: Latin America Security Ratings
Table: Latin America State Vulnerability To Terrorism Ratings
Colombia’s Security Risk Ratings
Long-Term Political Outlook
Domestic Security Overview
Internal Security Situation
External Security Situation
Armed Forces And Government Spending
Arms Trade Overview
Industry Trends And Developments
Procurement Trends And Developments
Industry Forecast Scenario
Table: Colombia’s Armed Forces, 2000-2009 (’000 personnel, unless otherwise stated)
Table: Colombia’s Available Manpower For Military Services, 2009-2016 (aged 16-49, unless otherwise stated)
Table: Colombia’s Government Defence Expenditure, 2009-2016
Table: Colombia’s Defence Expenditure Scenario – Changing % Of GDP, 2009-2016 (US$mn)
Table: Colombia’s Defence Exports, 2009-2016 (US$mn)
Table: Colombia’s Defence Imports, 2009-2016 (US$mn)
Table: Colombia’s Trade Balance, 2009-2016 (US$mn)
Table: Colombia – Economic Activity, 2011-2016
Industria Militar (Indumil)
Country Snapshot: Colombia Demographic Data
Section 1: Population
Table: Demographic Indicators, 2005-2030
Table: Rural/Urban Breakdown, 2005-2030
Section 2: Education And Healthcare
Table: Education, 2002-2005
Table: Vital Statistics, 2005-2030
Table: Employment Indicators, 2001-2006
Table: Consumer Expenditure, 2000-2012 (US$)
Table: Average Annual Wages, 2000-2012
How We Generate Our Industry Forecasts
- Industria Militar (Indumil)
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