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Narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances: internal aspects

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1) OBJECTIVE

To prevent the manufacture of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances legitimately marketed in the Community from being diverted for illicit purposes.

2) ACT

Council Directive 92/109/EEC of 14 December 1992 on the manufacture and the placing on the market of certain substances used in the illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances [Official Journal L 370, 19.12.1992].

3) SUMMARY

The Directive distinguishes two types of precursor: those with limited use for licit purposes, and those of essential importance for legitimate commercial use.

The Directive defines "scheduled substance", "placing on the market", "operator", "UN Convention" and "International Narcotics Control Board".

The Directive lays down requirements in respect of documentation, records and labelling. It guarantees the competent authorities access to documents and records for verification purposes.

Member States must designate a competent authority in order to ensure proper application of the Directive. The Directive also requires intra-Community cooperation between the competent authorities.

Member States are to take all appropriate measures to encourage operators to notify the competent authorities of all unusual orders or transactions relating to scheduled substances which show that the substances which are to be placed on the market or manufactured are likely to be used in the illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances. Likewise, the Member States shall encourage all persons who suspect, from information obtained by reason of their professional duties, that scheduled substances which have been, or are about to be, placed on the market or manufactured are likely to be used for the illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances, to inform the competent authorities thereof.

With regard to the control measures, the Directive confers on the competent authorities powers of inspection, search and seizure. The competent authorities may prohibit the placing on the market or manufacture of scheduled substances if they believe that these substances are ultimately destined for the illegal manufacture of narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances.

An annual report drawn up by the Commission will be submitted to the International Narcotics Control Board. The report will provide information on the amounts of scheduled substances seized, the methods of diversion and illicit manufacture, any substances identified as having being used in illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances, and the nature and origin of processing equipment seized.

ActDate
of entry into force
Final date for implementation in the Member States
Directive 92/109/EEC01.07.199301.07.1993

4) IMPLEMENTING MEASURES

Regulation (EC) No 1485/96 [Official Journal L 188 of 27.7.1996]
Commission Regulation of 26 July 1996 setting out the conditions for implementing Council Directive 92/109/EEC with regard to customer declarations which specify the uses of certain substances used in the illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances.
According to this Regulation, a customer who purchases a classified substance falling within categories 1 or 2 in Annex I to Directive 92/109/EEC must complete a declaration on his supplier's premises that specifies the use(s) of that substance. The Regulation also provides that a specific declaration shall be drawn up which covers multiple transactions in the substances falling within category 2.

This Regulation was amended by:

Commission Regulation No 1533/2000 of 13 July 2000 [Official Journal L 175 of 14.07.2000]
This Regulation amends the model declarations of use in respect of individual and multiple transactions, and establishes a uniform model for all operators so as to facilitate the monitoring of these declarations by the Member State authorities.

Recommendation [Official Journal C 114 of 15.05.2002]
Council Recommendation of 25 April 2002 on the need to enhance cooperation and exchanges of information between the various operational units specialising in combating trafficking in precursors in the Member States of the European Union.

Full text of the recommendation

Amendments to the Annexes to the Directive:

Directive 2003/101/EC [Official Journal L 286 of 04.11.2003]
This Directive replaces Annexes I and II of the basic directive on 1 January 2004.

5) FOLLOW-UP WORK

On 23 January 1998, the Commission presented a proposal for a European Parliament and Council Directive amending Council Directive 92/109/EEC on the manufacture and the placing on the market of certain substances used in the illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances [COM(98) 22 final - Official Journal C 108 of 07.04.1998].

Co-decision procedure (COD/1998/17)
First reading: on 20 November 1998, the European Parliament approved the Commission proposal subject to certain amendments. The Commission accepted most of these amendments.

The Commission presented an amended proposal on 28 April 1999. [COM(99) 202 final - Official Journal C 162 of 09.06.1999]

This proposal was withdrawn by the Commission and replaced by:

Proposal for a European Parliament and Council regulation on drug precursors [COM(2002) 494 final - Official Journal C 20 E of 28.01.2003].
This proposal aims to transform Directive 92/109/EEC into a Regulation, in order to simplify the legislation and make it more user-friendly both for economic operators and for the competent authorities in the Member States. The purpose of the new Regulation is to establish harmonised measures for controlling and monitoring certain chemical substances frequently used in the manufacture of illicit narcotic drugs. It contains rules on licensing, customer declarations and labelling. A monitoring procedure will prevent barriers to the free trade of these substances arising between Member States.

Co-decision procedure (COD/2002/0217)

On 26 February 2003, the Economic and Social Committee gave its opinion. [Official Journal C 95 of 23.04.2003]

On 11 March 2003, the European Parliament approved the Commission proposal subject to certain amendments. The Commission accepted some of these amendments.

On 19 May 2003, the Council reached a political agreement on its common position.

On 27 May 2003, la Commission adopted an amended proposal [COM(2003) 304 final - not yet published in the Official Journal].

On 29 September 2003, the Council adopted the common position [Official Journal L 277 E of 18.11.2003].

On 7 October 2003, the Commission stated its agreement with the Council's common position.

The common position is currently before Parliament for its second reading.

Last updated: 20.12.2003

See also

For further information, see:

The Enterprise Directorate-General website (EMCDDA) on drugs.

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