Latest research from the UN suggests the global markets for cocaine and heroin appear to have shrunk but production and use of synthetic drugs is increasing.
The World Drug Report estimates 28 million people are heavy users, likely to be physically or psychologically dependent on drugs. With an estimated 167 million regular users, cannabis remains the most widely used and cultivated drug in the world. While usage is gradually declining in the US and stabilising in Europe, it is increasing in Latin America, Asia and Africa. The agency also reported big falls in the cultivation of opium in Afghanistan and cocaine in Columbia. But it also saw a growth in industrial-sized laboratories in southeast Asia ,producing huge quantities of methamphetamines and crystal meth.