INCB President presents 2019 reports to Economic and Social Council Meeting

3 June 2020 - Today, INCB President, Mr. Cornelis P. de Joncheere, presented the 2019 annual report and the precursors report at the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) management segment meeting. The thematic chapter of the 2019 report contains a discussion on "improving substance use prevention and treatment services for young people", raising awareness in regard to reducing the adverse public health and social consequences of drug abuse among young people aged 15-24. The President echoed the need and urged governments to improve services using evidence-based prevention and treatment interventions for young people.

The INCB President referred to the Board's consultations with the Government of Afghanistan, and urged the international community and UN system to assist the country in addressing the drug control challenges affecting peace and sustainable development faced by the Government and the people of Afghanistan.

The INCB President reminded Council members of the need to respect human rights in the implementation of drug policies and in compliance with the three international drug control conventions and the principle of proportionality. He also referred to the emergence of designer precursors and non-medical synthetic opioids, and the work of INCB to assist Member States in addressing these challenges.

The President also recalled the aim of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances, which is to ensure the availability of these substances for medical and scientific purposes, while preventing their diversion and abuse. He drew attention to INCB's two annual technical publications reviewing the functioning of the international system of estimates, assessments, and statistical returns, based on information reported to INCB by national authorities.

Mr. de Joncheere further explained the role that INCB is playing during the COVID-19 pandemic and the support it continues to provide to competent national authorities in the functioning of the system of international trade in controlled substances and ensuring continued access to controlled medicines for all COVID-19 related medical needs and for ongoing medical needs such as those related to pain management, palliative care, mental and neurological conditions, and medicine-assisted substitution therapies.

The full text of the President's speech can be accessed online here.


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