A regional conference "Drug Problems in Central Asia: Assessment of the Situation and Necessary Measures" opened on Wednesday in Tashkent.
More than 300 experts from international organizations and institutions, UN agencies and donor countries are taking part in the conference.
The forum will last till June 28th, two research projects on drug problems in Central Asia are to be presented.
The conference was organized by the Central Asian delegation of the UN department on drug control and crime prevention, the regional European bureau of the World Health Organization, the US Agency for international cooperation, OSCE, and the Austrian government.
The participants will discuss the strategy of combating drug abuse, priority measures for diminishing demand for drugs, as well as cooperation at the national and regional level.
According to the UN data, about 8 million people in the world use heroin, 13.3 million - cocaine, 141.2 million - marijuana, 280 million - synthetic drugs. The annual drug trade turnover is estimated at more than $500 billion, which equals 8 per cent of the world trade turnover. Neighboring on the Central Asian states Afghanistan is one of the main drug producers and illegal drug dealers in the world. The territory of these countries is often used by drug dealers for their activities.