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The coffee economy of Colombia (Inglês)

Colombia, with a level of exports of about 6 million bags per year, is the second largest coffee exporting country in the world. Coffee cultivation accounts for 7 to 8 percent of the gross domestic product of Colombia. With a maximum prospective growth of coffee export of 2.5 percent annually, the maintenance of an adequate rate of growth of the economy is dependent on a substantial expansion of other exports. With a population growth rate of 3.2 percent per year, a growth rate of 6 percent is needed in order to achieve an adequate increase in income per capita. The only concerted effort in Colombia so far aimed at diversifying economic activity in the coffee sector is the Caldas Regional Development Program. This effort sought to increase the overall growth rate and reduce dependence upon coffee. This program failed to make alternative investments as attractive to regional farmers as coffee investments. The basic problem in coffee diversification in Colombia is that the support of coffee prices has not resulted in an adjustment of output to the total marketing possibilities. The basic need for a coffee diversification strategy is to formulate a program of cutbacks in coffee and of alternative employment for the resources displaced.

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