The Spaniards arrived in the area in the early 16th century. In 1717 the Spanish crown established the Viceroyalty of New Granada, made up of the present-day states of Venezuela, Colombia, Panama and Ecuador. Following independence in 1813, the Republic of Greater Colombia was formed in 1819 and included all the former members of the Spanish Viceroyalty. By 1830 Ecuador and Venezuela had seceded from the republic, followed by Panama in 1903. Despite Colombia's commitment to democratic institutions, periods of widespread and violent conflict have been common in the nation's history. A four-decade long conflict between government forces and anti-government insurgent groups, principally the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) heavily funded by the drug trade, escalated during the 1990s. The insurgents lack the military or popular support necessary to overthrow the government and violence has decreased since about 2002. But insurgents continue attacks against civilians and large areas of the countryside are under guerrilla influence or are contested by security forces. With a population of more than 45 million, Colombia is one of the largest countries in South America, and is endowed with significant natural resources. It has substantial oil reserves and is a major producer of gold, silver, emeralds, platinum and coal. But decades-long violent conflict has had an adverse impact on the economy. Despite strong growth in recent years, about half of the population still lives below the poverty line.