Land and Colombia’s Journey to Self-Reliance


Grievances over land were key drivers of Colombia’s nearly 50-year internal conflict. At the onset of the conflict, land distribution was highly inequitable: less than 1% of the population owned more than 50% of the country’s best land. Since then, land ownership has become even more concentrated through displacement and illicit acquisition associated with the conflict and narcotics trade. Colombia has the second highest rate of internal displacement in the world, surpassed only by Syria, with 6 million people having fled their land. Currently, about 30% of Colombians are estimated to have insecure land rights.