NEW YORK, Nov. 17, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Includes 3 FREE quarterly updatesView: Colombian military expenditure will see only a modest decrease in 2016 amid the government's ongoing fiscal consolidation measures. However, defence spending will increase more robustly over the medium-to-long term, reflecting persistent security threats posed by tensions with neighbouring countries (namely Venezuela) and the ongoing fight against drug trafficking and related crime. We expect defence expenditure to remain stable at around 3.6% of GDP over the coming years. Colombia will maintain a large defence trade deficit for the foreseeable future, given the highly underdeveloped state of its local defence sector. The government is seeking to improve this trade balance through the development of the local defence sector; however, efforts are somewhat constrained by a limited defence budget. Latest Updates: - The Colombian government is continuing its fiscal consolidation programme into 2016, and consequently we do not expect strong growth in the defence budget this year. However, the country's Minister of Defence Luis Carlos Villegas has announced an increase in resources for the defence sector in the 2017 budget. The minister estimated that the defence budget would reach USD330bn in 2017. - While Colombians rejected the peace deal between the FARC and government in October's referendum, we believe both sides remain committed to the reconciliation process, and expect the ceasefire to hold in the medium term. That said, risks of hard-line factions of the FARC breaking away and continuing to fight are elevated - and will rise further the longer peace negotiations are dragged out. In any case, security risks will remain high in Colombia in the years ahead, as there are numerous armed groups active throughout the regions now being abandoned by the FARC - many of which are poised to gain control of lucrative drug trafficking routes as they are vacated.