Forum: Advisory Panel on the Question of the Indochinese
Drug production and trafficking is a widespread issue that has proven to be extremely difficult for individual governments. The black market for illegal drugs has become almost omnipresent in modern society as the production and distribution of drugs has evolved into one of the most profitable industries. United Nations (UN) reports from 2003 value the illegal drug market to be approximately $320 billion and growing.
Governments try to prevent the issue through legal restrictions such as prohibition which has caused the formation of the black market. In their efforts to prevent drug trafficking, governments face many obstacles such as the implementation of legal penalties and its use of valuable resources that have large opportunity costs. Hence a pattern has arisen showing the production of illegal drugs occurring mostly in Less Economically Developed Countries (LEDCs) that then distribute the product around the world. Therefore, the issue is not only banning the production of the illegal drugs in one’s country, but preventing the illegal importing of such goods.
Although drug production and trafficking occurs all over the world, there are certain regions in which drug production is greater, and one of those regions in Asia is known as the “Golden Triangle.” The triangle consists of four countries (Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand) and is one of the largest opium producing regions in the world. Large amounts of a variety of illegal drugs originate from this region. The countries in the “Golden Triangle” as well as neighboring countries are greatly affected by the production and trafficking of these illegal drugs.
Definition of Key Terms
The production and distribution of illegal drugs domestically and internationally. The black market for such illegal goods is extensive and governments struggle to implement efficient prohibition laws.
A region in Asia known for its production of opium that consists of four countries: Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Thailand.
A region in Asia known for its production of opium that consists of three countries: Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran.
As drug prohibition laws came into action, a black market for newly illegal drugs became prevalent. In 19th-century China, the two “Opium Wars” broke out because of disputes between the British and Chinese. Decades earlier, the British produced large amounts of opium in Bengal, in Northeastern India, and illegally exported it to China; the Chinese Emperor became wary of the increasing use of opium and rising number of addicts. In order to control the issue, seeing as the prohibition laws had not been effective, the emperor demanded that foreign companies surrender their opium to the government. However, when the British firms refused to comply, the emperor banned all importing and held foreigners in the country until...