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World Heroin Market: Can Supply Be Cut?

NCJ Number
Letizia Paoli; Victoria A. Greenfield; Peter Reuter
Date Published
388 pages
This book examines the contemporary world heroin market, its development and structure, its participants, and its socio-economic impact.
Findings of this 5 year long research project involving extensive fieldwork in six Asian countries, Colombia, and Turkey, conclude that there is little opportunity to shrink the global supply of heroin in the long-term. This study explores why production is concentrated in a handful of countries, and is likely to remain that way, as well as why the failure of their efforts has become a central policy concern. The book is structured in three sections: the first part of this book sets down basic facts and reviews the historical development of the world opiate market; the second part explores market condition in Afghanistan, Burma, India, Colombia, and Tajikistan; and the third part includes a theoretical model of effective illegality that helps to explain the role of government in determining each country's mode of participation, and suggests opportunities and challenges for policymakers. Heroin is universally considered the world's most harmful illegal drug. This is due not only to the damaging effects of the drug itself, but also to the spread of AIDS tied to its use. Illegal mass consumption in the 1960s and 1970s has given rise to a global market for heroin and other opiates of nearly 16 million users. The production and trafficking of opiates have caused crime, disease, and social distress throughout the world, leading many nations to invest billions of dollars trying to suppress the industry. New insights into market conditions in India, Tajikistan, and other countries that have been greatly harmed by the production and trafficking of illegal opiates are offered. Tables, figures, appendixes, notes, references, and index


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