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Balanced Drug Policy

Over the recent years a lot of problems have been accumulated in regard to illicit traffic in drugs, what has been negatively influencing the life and health of the Georgian population.

Since the October Elections of 2012 the Ministry of Internal Affairs has chosen the vector of balanced drug policy. Each and every initiative of the Ministry represents the outcome of the consecutive policy, which has been planned as a result of comprehensive analytical work.

As a first step, it was important to eliminate illicit traffic in various psychoactive substances. In this regard, the country has carried out the activities to solve three basic problems. The first and most urgent problem facing the country in regard to drug consumption, was medicinal substances containing Codeine, used to make homemade drug – “Desomorphine” (“Crocodile”). Over the recent years these substances were legally imported to Georgia in the form of millions of pills and were freely available at pharmacies. On behalf of the MIA and Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Affairs of Georgia, the package of legislative amendments has been initiated at the Parliament, according to which illicit traffic in combined medicinal substances containing Codeine has been subject to criminal prosecution. This approach has resulted in a 90% reduce in consumption of “Krokodil”, upon entry into force.

The second, also very urgent problem was new psychoactive substances, the so-called “bios” and “spices”, which were not legally regulated anyhow and were imported to Georgia without any control. Based on the experience of several European countries and on behalf of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia, a new draft Law has been elaborated, envisaging inter alia criminalization of classes of chemical compounds. This draft Law has turned out to be very effective in several directions. Since entry into force of the Law, law enforcement agencies conduct seizures of new psychoactive substances nearly every day. On the basis of the Law, a monitoring system on NPS has been institutionalized in the form of a State Commission, which unifies relevant agencies, meets every month and identifies specific problems as well as prepares recommendations for the Georgian Government. Furthermore, the Ministry conducts a wide-scale anti-drug campaign, the focus group of the campaign is the whole population and especially the youth. This campaign has delivered the State’s main messages concerning legal consequences as well as adverse health effects of drug consumption and the necessity of healthy lifestyle to all segments of the population. Due to the mentioned measures and based on the data available from narcologists, the figures of consumption of new psychoactive substances have been significantly reduced. According to the May-August data of 2014, the import of new psychoactive substances across the borders has decreased approximately by 11 times, in comparison to the data of the same period of 2013.

The third and a very important problem is illicit traffic in classical drugs on the territory of Georgia. In order to better realize how effectively the MIA combats this problem and to understand its scale, the seizures of 116 kg Heroin at the border in June 2013 and of 2,8 tons of liquid Heroin in July 2014 should be mentioned, whose market value amount to hundreds of millions of dollars. In July 2014 approximately 5,3 tons of Cannabis plant was seized. All three cases are unprecedented in the history of Georgia and demonstrate a very effective work conducted by the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

On the next stage, it is important to carry out the projects aimed at treatment-rehabilitation of drug users. The State works effectively in this direction as well.

2014 Report on Drug Situation in Georgia -
Within the Competence of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia