MOSCOW, March 25. /ITAR-TASS/. Tackling the problem of Afghanistan’s drug production will help revitalize the global economy that annually loses $2 trillion from drug trafficking, says head of Russia’s Federal Drug Control Service.
“According to generally accepted estimates, including those of UN experts, drugs money in the world total around $800 billion a year, while negative effects for the real economy two or three times exceed this sum,” Viktor Ivanov said on Tuesday. “The annual damage caused to the global economy reaches $2 trillion as a minimum, what is equal to the GDP of such countries as France or the United Kingdom.”
He cited the figures given by Antonio Maria Costa, former head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, saying that in 2008-2009 around $352 billion of drugs profits were absorbed into the banking system to eliminate liquidity shortage.
“This proves the fact that in general, the whole existing global economic system is not only dysfunctional, but also is targeted at self-destruction,” Ivanov said. “Thus, the global economy is a kind of a hostage to drug production, while Afghanistan, in turn, is a hostage to the sick global economy.”
“Tackling the problem of Afghanistan’s drug production will help cure the global economy,” he said, adding that alternative development would help lead the world out of the crisis.
Russia is one of the largest destinations for heroin from Afghanistan, the world’s main heroin producer. Last year, Russia seized 2.6 metric tons of Afghan heroin, which was a 20% increase on the previous year.
Speaking earlier in the year, Ivanov said that the scale of poppy plantations in Afghanistan reached its historic maximum in 2013 and, according to UN estimations, spanned a record of 209,000 hectares.