There is a global transition occurring in the production and distribution of methamphetamine in southern and eastern Africa. Globally, methamphetamine production volumes have been breaking records, market penetration has expanded and diversified, and its unit production cost and price have decreased. Centres of mass production have moved beyond the traditional ‘Golden Triangle’ and Mexican cartel territories, with new footholds being established in Europe, South Asia and Africa.
Some might say that methamphetamine is not really an ‘African drug’. After all, its presence and use in Africa often has been described as a localised issue (usually in relation to use in the Western Cape province of South Africa) or a minor reporting concern in relation to the potential or actual diversion of related precursor chemicals (in the context of West Africa). Often methamphetamine is viewed as transitory, a drug for foreign ‘others’ that merely passes through Africa on route to other destinations.
In fact, we know now that such perceptions are outdated and in this report, the factors involved are presented as a picture of how, why and where the methamphetamine trade has changed in Africa, and what it means for people who use drugs and harm reduction service providers.
To read or download ‘A SYNTHETIC AGE – The Evolution of Methamphetamine Markets in Eastern and Southern Africa’ PDF report by Jason Eligh*, click the button:
* About the Author:
Jason Eligh is a senior expert at the GI-TOC. He is an illicit drug market and policy analyst who has researched, developed and led technical cooperation and assistance initiatives that address illicit drugs issues in African and Asian geographies. His expertise focuses on understanding the contexts and characteristics influencing illicit drug use behaviours and the structural resilience of drug trade environments, particularly as these factors relate to the development and sustainability of harm.