Illicit drug cultivation, drug trafficking and drug consumption are global phenomena. However, developing countries are particularly affected by the harmful impacts of the drug problem. Related side effects include armed conflicts, the spread of organised crime and corruption, the impoverishment of the local population in drug cultivation areas and increased risks to public health through the use of illicit drugs and the transmission of disease. These massive challenges overstretch the capacity of many countries to deal with them.
The Global Partnership on Drug Policies and Development (GPDPD) aims at tackling this issue. GPDPD is a project implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH on behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and under the political patronage of the Federal Government's Drug Commissioner.
The purpose of this cross-sectoral and interregional project is to collaborate with interested governments and international partner organisations to promote the implementation of development-focused and health-oriented approaches in drug policy. The aim is to combine rural development concepts with public health protection, thus achieving better solutions for dealing with global drug problems.
Firstly, it aims to promote the international drug policy debate. The framework for these activities is defined in particular by the implementation of the UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) 2016 resolutions on the world drug problem. Working through various dialogue formats, GPDPD aims to ensure that positions regarding development promotion and health protection are anchored in global drug policy. The project cooperates with the governments of other countries, for example Colombia, Great Britain, Myanmar, the Netherlands, Norway and Thailand.
Secondly, the project advises interested governments on adapting their national drug policy strategies. These measures are implemented by a consortium headed by GIZ; consortium members are the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the Mae Fah Luang Foundation (MFLF), the Transnational Institute (TNI), and the International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC).
Thirdly, GPDPD is committed to improving the scientific basis of international drug policy, focusing in particular on findings related to the effectiveness of alternative development and public health care approaches in dealing with drug consumption.
GPDPD represents an innovation in the Federal Government's drug policy. For the first time, a project is being implemented in German development cooperation under the patronage of the Federal Government's Drug Commissioner. For the first time, development policy and health-oriented approaches to drug policy are being combined in a global development cooperation project. Through its global orientation and innovative pilot programmes, the BMZ is making a direct contribution to the implementation of the United Nations Action Plan to Combat the World Drug Problem of 2009, the Federal Government’s National Strategy on Drug and Addiction Policy of 2012, and the EU Drugs Action Plan of 2013.
The interdepartmental coherence of GPDPD measures is supervised by a political steering committee on drug policy, comprising representatives from the Federal Ministry of Health (BMG), the Federal Foreign Office (AA), the Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI) and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The Federal Drug Commissioner has taken on the chairmanship of this committee.