Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Estimating Cocaine Production Using a Novel Dataset Based on Reported Seizures of Laboratories

26 Pages Posted: 23 Jul 2011 Last revised: 6 Feb 2012

See all articles by Riccardo Leoncini

Riccardo Leoncini

University of Bologna - Department of Economics; Ceris-CNR

Francesco Rentocchini

Southampton Business School, University of Southampton

Date Written: February 6, 2012

Abstract

Background: Data on the cocaine market appear to be inconsistent, as they tend to show declining prices vis-a-vis a steady or increasing demand and a declining supply. This paper proposes an explanation for this trend by providing evidence that there is an under-estimation of the supply of cocaine.

Methods: We propose a conservative estimate of cocaine production in Colombia for the year 2008 using the reported seizures of laboratories made by the counteracting organisations operating within the Colombian territory.

Results: Our estimate is at least twice the estimates declared in the official statistics, although we are careful to keep all of our variables to their minimum boundary values. We conclude that our methodology could prove to be a very useful tool, especially if used in parallel with the standard tools. Moreover, the characteristics of the tool (affordability, ease of use and the potential for worldwide adoption) make it a powerful instrument to counteract cocaine production.

Keywords: cocaine, cocaine production, drug seizures, Colombia

JEL Classification: K42, L23, L65, O20, O54

Suggested Citation

Leoncini, Riccardo and Rentocchini, Francesco, Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Estimating Cocaine Production Using a Novel Dataset Based on Reported Seizures of Laboratories (February 6, 2012). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1892786 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1892786

Riccardo Leoncini (Contact Author)

University of Bologna - Department of Economics ( email )

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Italy
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HOME PAGE: http://www2.dse.unibo.it/leoncini/leoncini.html

Ceris-CNR ( email )

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Francesco Rentocchini

Southampton Business School, University of Southampton ( email )

University Rd.
Southampton SO17 1BJ, Hampshire SO17 1LP
United Kingdom

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