Saturday, 4 June 2011

Spain consumes most cocaine in Europe

EUROPE/SPAIN Spain is the European country that consumes most cocaine, according to a report by the UN's International Narcotics Control Board (INCB). Among people of between 15 and 64, 3.1% have used the substance, followed by the UK (2.4%), Italy (2.2%) and Ireland (1.7%). The data used in the report was taken from 2007 to 2009, using the latest figures available in each country. Therefore, although there was a mild descent of cocaine use in the UK, and it had levelled in Italy and Spain, it was on the increase in Albania, Cyprus, Denmark, Norway and Czech. The report also points out that Spain is the principal country of entry for drugs, particularly by sea. The largest drug hauls in Spain have happened in international waters - two thirds in 2007 - and only 2% on beaches and 6% at airports. It also states that it is estimated that 93% of cannabis resin (hashish) originates in Morrocco.>Spain is the second largest European market for cocaine, after the UK, above those of Italy, Germany and France. "Levels of prevalence of use of cocaine are higher in the UK and Spain than in the whole of the USA." Twenty-one percent of cocaine users in Europe are in Spain, a percentage only 'bettered' by the UK, which holds 23%, followed by Italy (19%), Germany (9%) and France (5%).

Four million cocaine addicts in Europe
Average prevalence of usage in EU countries is 1.2%, which translates into 4 million addicts of varying degrees among people 15 to 64. This according to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA).

Worldwide, between 155 and 250 million (3.5 to 5.7% of the population between ages 15 to 64) have taken illegal drugs at least once in 2008; mostly cannabis and followed by amphetamines, cocaine and opiates, principally heroin.

In 2008, between 16 and 38 million people all over the world had drug problems in varying degrees, which means 10 to 15% of all people who had taken these substances. Of these, between 12 and 30% received treatment, thus leaving 11 to 33.5 million without treatment.

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