Asia

Report shows increase in Afghanistan opium poppy cultivation

A new survey reports a 10 percent increase in opium poppy cultivation and 91 percent decrease in eradication across Afghanistan.

The joint UN and Afghan government survey released Sunday shows the total area under cultivation in Afghanistan at an estimated 201,000 hectares (496,681 acres) in 2016, a 10 percent increase from the 183,000 hectares (452,200 acres) in 2015.

The report also shows a 91 percent decrease in eradication this year.

No eradication has taken place in provinces with high levels of opium poppy cultivation due to the extremely poor security situation in those areas, as well as logistical and financial challenges, the report added.

Overall, the potential opium production in Afghanistan has increased 43 percent, with 4,800 tons this year compared to 3,300 tons in 2015.