Changes to Colombia’s socioeconomic model as a result of peace talks will go no further than agrarian reform, said the President of the Senate.
Negotiators of the FARC and the Colombian government clashed publicly last week after chief rebel negotiator “Ivan Marquez” claimed that a pending peace deal with the state can only be reached after drastic changes to the country’s socioeconomic model. This was rejected by government lead negotiator Humberto de la Calle who said the country’s economic system was not up for debate.
Senate President Roy Barreras told Colombia Reports on Thursday that the only changes to the country’s economic model would be part of an agrarian reform that is part of the agreed upon agenda.
“This point is an exception to the rule,” Barreras said.
There has been significant overlap between FARC demands on land reform and the Colombian government’s proposed Rural Development Act. All but two of the 17 points that are part of FARC’s “revolutionary land reform” manifesto have similarity with the government’s agrarian reform bill.
The two points of contention are focused on debt relief to farmers and the redistribution of land operated by foreign companies. The Rural Development Act does not include the confiscation of land owned by foreign companies and does not absolve the rural population of debt, however it does propose a range of subsidies.
The FARC and the government will meet in the Cuban capital Havana on November 15 to continue negotiating an end to Colombia’s nearly half-a-century long armed conflict.