The use of illicit drugs and the misuse of drugs generally, is a major problem for individuals, families and communities across Europe. Apart from the health and social implications of drug misuse, the illicit drugs market constitutes a major element of criminal activity across European society and, indeed, on a global level.

In December 2012, the Council adopted the EU Drugs Strategy for 2013-2020. The Strategy aims to contribute to a reduction in drug demand and drug supply within the EU. It also aims to reduce the health and social risks and harms caused by drugs through a strategic approach that supports and complements national policies, that provides a framework for coordinated and joint actions and that forms the basis and political framework for EU external cooperation in this field. This will be achieved through an integrated, balanced and evidence-based approach.

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