Same resource, different conflicts: an analysis of the relationship between gold, conflict, and crime in six departments of Colombia - Different Resources, Different Conflicts? - Libros y Revistas - VLEX 845670532

Same resource, different conflicts: an analysis of the relationship between gold, conflict, and crime in six departments of Colombia

AutorAngelika Rettberg, Juan Camilo Cárdenas and Juan Felipe Ortiz-Riomalo
Same resource, dierent conicts:
An analysis of the relationship
between gold, conict, and crime
in six departments of Colombia*
A R, J C C
 J F O-R
T   make up this book a re based on a fundamental prem-
ise: In order to understand the dynamics of armed conict and crime in Co-
lombia, one needs to adopt a regional standpoint, on the basis of the resources
which dominate subnational economies. In short, we, the dierent authors
of its chapters, argue that the characteristics of the process of producing and
commercializing the resource which distinguishes a g iven regional economy
inuence the decisions the armed or cri minal actors make about occupying or
competing for the territory and the resu lting forms of violence. is emphasis
on the subnational order is important, because it shows the way in which a rmed
conicts have regionally di erent manifestations, even when their protagonists
have agendas and aspirations of a national scope. is is a n important contribu-
tion to the global literature on the polit ical economy of armed conicts, which
tends to favor the national level in its analyses of the links between resources
and wars, and is coherent with the loca l turn in peacebuilding stud ies. e re-
source discussed in t his chapter, gold, prompts us to explore yet a further level
of dierentiation related to the variation withi n the same resource in terms of
its relation to the armed conict and cr ime in dierent regions.
* To cite this chapter: /./..
1/04/20 4:49 p.m.
 different resources, different conflicts?
Map . Gold-producing zones in C olombia
Source: Map drawn by Paola Lu na, Cartogr aphy Laboratory, Universidad de lo s Andes, based on dat a
from the Colombia n Mining Inform ation Service (SIMCO),  a nd the United Nations Oce on
Drugs and Cri me (UNODC)
1/04/20 4:49 p.m.
  ,  
Colombian mining was, at one point declared the d riving force of the coun-
try’s growth by former president Juan Manuel Santos (-, -).
In recent years, mining has been cha racterized by a large inow of foreign in-
vestment, competition for mining rights and t itles needed for exploration and
exploitation, big expectations of prot by the large companies devoted to the
gold business and hopes for royalties by the Colombian state, due to the recent
high prices of this minera l. e same expectations also spread to t he armed and
illegal organiz ations: gold has become a resource for nancing armed organi-
zations who were previously devoted to illegal crops (Massé and Camargo ;
Massé ; Rettberg and Ortiz-Rioma lo ).
Despite a slight fall in the price of gold recently, it continues to be above its
historic average (see gure ) and thus, in addition to formal businesspeople,
there are people who undertake th is extractive activity in conditions of infor-
mality and il legality due to the high revenues derived from the high prices.
In the mining regions, however, the reality of the production a nd commer-
cialization of gold entails diverse pos sibilities with regard to its relation to the
formal (or informal) economy, social order (or unrest), political stability, violence
and crimina lity. is is shown by the examples of the municipalities — located
in six depart ments — discussed in t his essay: Caucasia, Tarazá and Zaragoza,
in Antioquia, in the sub-region of the Bajo Cauca; Ma rmato, in Caldas; Quibdó
and Tadó in Chocó; La Llanada and Los Andes, i n Nariño; California, i n Santan-
der; and Cajamarca in Tolima. ese regions have been the protagonists of gold
production in Colombia for reasons and historical paths which are di erent in
many cases. Among them, the Bajo Cauca of Antioqu ia is the prototype of the
relation between the resource and violence, since its high levels of v iolence testify
to the competition for the territory and the resource by di erent armed organi-
zation. In contrast, in the municipa lities of the mining distr ict of La Llanada, in
Nariño, gold is extracted and commercia lized in a partia lly isolated form from
illegal armed ac tors. In Quibdó and Tadó, in Chocó, a department whose mining
tradition goes back to the colonial era, d ierent ways in which gold mining may
be associated with con ict and crime converge: a conict between dierent ty pes
of mining operations (informal mini ng, mostly illegal and mechaniz ed versus
artisana l mining, with much less mechani zation but mostly legal) and between
illegal min ing and other economic activities such as shing; a rmed actors who
seek to illegally seize the revenues derived from the activity (mainly through
medium scale mechanized operations); and certication schemes which seek
to increase formal and responsible practices along the whole value chain and
thus make it easier to guard it from the i llegal armed actors.
California, a nother municipality w ith a gold mining tradition dating back
several centuries, located i n the area of inuence of the páramo (high Andean
moor) of Santurbán, felt the inuence of the armed actors who entered the region
1/04/20 4:49 p.m.

Para continuar leyendo

Solicita tu prueba

VLEX utiliza cookies de inicio de sesión para aportarte una mejor experiencia de navegación. Si haces click en 'Aceptar' o continúas navegando por esta web consideramos que aceptas nuestra política de cookies. ACEPTAR