INCB recommends the scheduling of MAPA to CND

VIENNA, 13 December 2019 - At the reconvened sixty-second session of the Commission of Narcotic Drugs, the President of the International Narcotics Control Board, Mr. Cornelis P. de Joncheere announced the INCB's decision to recommend the international control of methyl alpha-phenylacetoacetate (MAPA), a pre-precursor used in the illicit manufacture of amphetamine and methamphetamine.

The Board conducted an assessment of MAPA based on information received from 50 governments and concluded that there are no legitimate uses of MAPA. MAPA is a substitute chemical for several amphetamine and methamphetamine precursors in Table I of the 1988 Convention, namely P-2-P, APAAN and the recently controlled APAA. MAPA started to emerge in late 2017, with an increase in the number of seizures and amounts seized since November 2018. The emergence of MAPA is closely linked with an increase in scrutiny over APAA. MAPA is therefore another illustration of the concept of designer precursors, i.e., close chemical relatives of controlled precursors, which are purpose-made and can easily be converted into a controlled precursor. Similar to APAAN, APAA and other designer precursors, MAPA does not have any legitimate use and is therefore not traded widely and regularly although it is advertised by a number of online suppliers.

The number of seizures and the amounts seized have been a concern since the emergence of MAPA in 2017. By scheduling MAPA, INCB hopes to see an impact on the availability of MAPA for illicit drug manufacturing purposes, and a first step towards an encompassing solution addressing designer precursors.

The possible inclusion of MAPA in Table I of the 1988 Convention will be discussed and voted on at the upcoming sixty-third session of the Commission in March 2020.

The statement of the President can be found here.

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INCB is the independent, quasi-judicial body charged with promoting and monitoring Government compliance with the three international drug control conventions: the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and the 1988 Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. Established by the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961, the thirteen members of the Board are elected in a personal capacity by the Economic and Social Council for terms of five years.

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