At the maiden Australasian Amphetamine Conference, researchers revealed that amphetamine abuse in the Asia-Pacific region has hit high levels and is currently the worst globally.
"A problem threatening Asia that is this big is a problem for Australia. The health of these countries is important to Australia as is the security of Australia in terms of drug supply coming here," Jeremy Douglas, the regional director of the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime told AFP.
AdvertisementHe added that in the Philippines 11 industrial-scale methamphetamine laboratories were discovered and in Thailand 15.8 million methamphetamine pills uncovered last year.
"It's no longer just those who are socially disaffected that are using drugs but also a middle class that are aspiring to greater wealth and prosperity and, along with that, aspiring to the lifestyle and customs of developed-world countries," Australian National Council on Drugs (ANCD) expert Robert Ali said. "When China can manufacture ecstasy tablets for under eight cents and they're producing in quantities way beyond demand ... it means the drugs are moving and they're moving quite rapidly through the region."