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Sinclair, Hamish (2004) International conference on the future EU Drugs Strategy. Drugnet Ireland , Issue 11, June 2004 , p. 24.

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On 10 May 2004 the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform and President of the Justice Affairs Council, Mr Michael McDowell, opened an international two-day conference in Dublin to discuss the future EU strategy on drugs. The conference, entitled ‘EU Strategy on Drugs - The Way Forward’, was organised by the Irish Presidency in partnership with the Netherlands, Luxembourg and United Kingdom forthcoming Presidencies.More than 200 experts in the field of drugs from the 25 EU member states, the three candidate countries, all relevant EU institutions, as well as other international bodies and organisations, attended the conference. Addressing the conference were speakers from the European Commission, EUROPOL, the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction and other experts in specific drug-related fields.

 The conference aimed to facilitate an exchange of ideas between all participants and to agree conclusions and recommendations on the main elements of a future Strategy. The current EU Drugs Strategy, for the period 2000–2004, will soon come to the end of its term and the Justice and Home Affairs Council will be invited to approve a new Strategy for 2005 onwards. To facilitate discussion, workshops were organised under the thematic fields of demand reduction, supply reduction, international co-operation, and information and evaluation. In each workshop, four strategy priorities proposed by the organising committee were discussed with a view to reaching a consensus on the main priorities for the new Strategy.

 It was generally agreed that the new Drugs Strategy should be based on a balanced and multidisciplinary approach, on scientific evidence, on respect for the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality, and on providing added value in relation to activities that are undertaken at national level. Furthermore, the future Action Plan resulting from the new Strategy should contain measurable targets, and specific time-bound actions that can be monitored and evaluated.

 The Dublin conference was one of a number of inputs to the preparation of the new Drugs Strategy. Another will be the final evaluation of the current EU Drugs Strategy 2000–2004 and its Action Plan. The aim of the final evaluation, under way at the European Commission, is to assess how far the activities identified in the Action Plan have been achieved, and how far that achievement has met the objectives of the underlying Drugs Strategy. It also aims to assess the impact of both on the drug situation in the EU. The final evaluation is expected by the end of October 2004.

 At its meeting on 8 June 2004, the EU Council for Justice and Home Affairs welcomed a report by the Irish Presidency on the main elements discussed at the Dublin Conference.

Item Type
Article
Publication Type
International, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
Substances (not alcohol/tobacco)
Intervention Type
Policy
Issue Title
Issue 11, June 2004
Date
June 2004
Page Range
p. 24
Publisher
Health Research Board
Volume
Issue 11, June 2004
EndNote
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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