Relations between drugs and international trade are a long story, we could think of the 19th century and the important consumption of opium in Europe, as can be seen for example in the film From Hell. Opium was obviously not produced in Europe for climatic reasons and essentially came from Asia. Drugs have long been trans-national goods. Nowadays drugs still are a major issue in the society but consumption and production structures have evolved and are still evolving. Drug trade is linked to borders, money circulation and easy traveling. All these areas also concern globalization. A simple definition of drugs could be: psycho-active substances. Nevertheless it is more complex because some products are legal in some countries and not in others. On the one hand, tobacco and alcohol are legal psycho-active substances in most countries.
[...] Governments in developing countries have loans if they reduce drugs production and exportations. Bulgaria has developed this solution with Paris club and it seems efficient. It is ironically called swap drug/debt but it seems to be a good idea because it is interesting for all implicated countries. Conclusion Even if drug has been a traded good for a long-time, globalization clearly had an impact on drug market. One of the collateral damage linked to liberalization and globalization is creating favourable conditions for drug production and money laundering. [...]
[...] A A global lack of solutions Many problems difficult to resolve and no short-run solutions There is a global lack of solutions to reduce drug production. The first problem is that it is an important source of revenue for peasants. Often they do not have other possibilities than cultivating drug if they want to have revenue and stay alive. Destruction of crops is not a fair solution because it condemns peasants to starvation and then other peasants or other countries cultivate drugs again. [...]
[...] try to answer to the question: what has been the impact of globalisation on drugs production and consumption? I Drugs are a traditionally transnational good: which changes did globalization bring? In order to evaluate changes brought by globalisation we need a picture of the traditional drug economy. Firstly we will see that drug has long been a transnational good and then we will notice that nevertheless globalisation has changed drug economy. A Drug economy has long been globalised Drug is a very old product which trade is a long tradition Drugs are very old, maybe as old as men years before Christ poppy was already cultivated in Mesopotamia. [...]
[...] B Important consequences in developing countries A new source of revenue and a new phenomenon of drug consumption An important point to notice is that drugs are a new important source of revenues for peasants. Since the commodities stock prices fall down during the 80's, many peasants produce coca or cannabis. Cannabis is very easy to cultivate. It requires little work, it is possible to have three or four crops in a year and it brings high-revenues. In Africa with 0,1 hectare of cannabis a peasant can earn 6000 to 7000 euros. [...]
[...] The eradication of opium poppy fields is felt by poor farmers and rural wage labourers. Another possibility should be to focus on middlemen. In some countries such as Kenya tough measures have been implemented to tackle drug trafficking problem. Since1993 drug trafficking can be punished with life imprisonment and a fee of one million of Kenyan shillings. But the main problem is to apply these laws. Some politics cover mafias and protect drug production. Judges are also corrupted and thus laws are not always applied. [...]
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