Five Countries With the Highest Rates of Illicit Drug Use in the World

Apr 19 2016

Five Countries With the Highest Rates of Illicit Drug Use in the World

According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the United States is the country with the largest percentage of people who reported using drugs at least once in 2013. The US leads the pack when it comes to using “any illicit drug” (19%) and “non-medical use” of prescription opioids (5%).

Check out the graphic below, via The Los Angeles Times.



  • Steve Todd

    I’m suspicious … bout iran? World’s best heroin!

    • lou

      Iran does not come close to the US consumption when you facto in the legal poisons.

  • lou

    Way to go USA, you’re number one! You are really exceptional! Now, what about shutting the hell up, cancelling the stupid and evil war on drugs, fix your infrastructure, and feed your people?

  • Maurice Dutton

    I particularly note Portugal, the one country that has decriminalised drugs is not on the list. This debunks the myth that decriminalising drugs leads to rampant drug usage.

    • John

      They are still criminalized, for dealers. Plus, they don’t condone drug use, or let abusers off the hook. They must attend therapeutic services. Portugal didn’t glorify and allow drugs to be legal without consequences, they chose a different approach, of providing therapy…

      • Maurice Dutton

        Thats not correct. They suss out whether you have your drug use under control or not. If you are determined to be in need of services they offer them to you in a package of therapy combined with cheap housing and return to work. If you are employed and show like eighty percent of drug users you can keep your usage under control and be stable with work and family commitments they leave you alone. Personal possession amounts relate directly to the drug involved but its all about keeping people employed and at not casting them out as some type of outcast pariahs like we do in western countries. The ones that treat drug usage as a crime have the worst statistics for drug recidivism. Cheers.

        • John

          1.) I was correct about the laws on the dealers. You did not address that point. Those that possess small amounts of drugs, are liable to various punishments if need be, from fines, to suspension of licence, if a professional (medical doctor for example), and drug confiscation…

          “These changes did not legalize drug
          use in Portugal. Possession has remained prohibited by Portuguese
          law and criminal penalties are still applied to drug growers, dealers
          and traffickers. ”

          2.) What would make Portugal a success, is the lowering of drug use, and not the increase of it. It is treated for a reason, because drugs are bad…

          2a.) Treatment uptake has increased, and definitely not decreased, so it’s not just a bunch of drug addicts running around. Now, they are getting treatment, in order to reduce drug dependency, which is what the state does not want, since it is unhealthy…

          3.) Investments into therapy was doubled through public funding, costing taxpayers…

          Yes, that’s right tax payers pay for the treatment and housing you mention.

          How would this work on the budget in larger countries, instead of tiny Portugal?





          • Maurice Dutton

            Try this, probably the most current analysis of the drug policy in Portugal. As for tax payers money, they have reduced their police drug squads or forces what ever you want to call them and so the savings are direct result of their policy and the money saved from employing people to kick in your door, shoot your dog and fuck up your life and that of your families goes to rehab clinics. Cheers

          • Maurice Dutton

            Hello John I don’t know why your reply is not on this site but I will give it the time to it. Yes I know who George Sorros is. Many billionaires give their money to sway political debate its called lobbying. But let me say when I first went into harm reduction it was Microsoft that froze my university email account. Every time an article was sent to me by other harm reduction activists and academics it would not open. I tried on several occasions to contact both microsoft and Bill Gates himself but was blocked. As well my internet was frozen by the American government for eight months until I emailed the US embassy and reminded them that they did not own the net. That i was a pacifist and it was illegal, immoral and unethical to trample on my rights to free speech. Thats the funny thing about Microsoft. Now I also now and the Beckley foundation as well. If you read the paper I posted the link to it is full of facts and statistics and you not once addressed them. You just waffled on about someone being a liberal. Well if Trump is the epitome of the opposite of liberal then I will tolerate them and from what I have seen of Bernie Sanders, although I don’t agree with all he says, he does make sense in some areas. The paper I posted the link to as well as being factual is endorsed by the Helsinki Human Rights foundation and that’s a pretty big endorsement to me. But here are some stats for you to digest. Tobacco costs the US economy around $300 billion a year. Alcohol related problems cost around $240 billion a year. Illicit drugs cost about $ 190 billion a year. I never said drug use was good for you but having your life ruined and your families life destroyed is far worse . So is having your dog shot and your house and car and land confiscated. A book by Dan Brown shows where the police abuse their confiscation powers to the maximum.Also the then head of the DEA was smoking two packs a day man so please get a reality check. People who put their son in for growing a few plants have lost everything. Its wrong and immoral and I would like to see the police urined as well as the politicians. So thats why four people voted for my reply. because it is balanced and factual. You just waffle on and attack me instead of sticking to the subject matter. I never said drugs were good. I said the alternatives were worse and I stand by my statement.
            Maurice Dutton
            Harm Reduction Advocate
            Drug Law reform Advocate
            prison Law Reform Advocate

          • John

            The people who voted for your comment, like yourself, probably do drugs and don’t want to face criminal penalties. I’m not that gullible…

            Like I said, it might work in tiny Portugal, but it won’t work in a large nation like the states. The tax payer cost will be too high.

            I don’t care for statisticical interpretstions from Soros open society…

            My statistics are superior since they are from an independent source…

            So long as you view drugs as bad, that’s good enough for me. That’s how Portugal sees it. A mental health problem and in some cases disease to be treated, while dealers are still criminalized…

            You can keep advocating, but it probably won’t work…

          • Maurice Dutton

            What statistics where. It is ignorant fools like yourself that have a small knowledge of drugs and keep their opinions formed around them. Show me your proof. While I am allow me to rebut your stupid comment about it not working in the states. Here are some links for you to read. Do it two or three times so you collect more information.

            SHOW ME YOUR STATISTICS. It as simple as that. You are full of it.

          • Maurice Dutton

            For those who are interested. I have used drugs in the past but it was a long time ago. If John above here wants to put his moth where his money is, in his pocket I will give a urine anytime 24/7. If anything other than what my doctor has written comes up I will donate $500 to a charity of his choosing. If however as I anticipate nothing other than my prescriptions is detected he has to pay $500 to a charity of my choice. I have two skinny joints I was given at Christmas I am not sure what to do with but I only discriminate against people who are ignorant of the facts.

          • Mike Jenkins

            Are you stupid? If all drugs where made legal they would be taxed and regulated creating billions of dollars in revenue. The DEA would be abolished saving tax dollars, the prison population would dwindle saving tax dollars, the black market would be gone meaning less violence from drug gangs and cartels, corruption among law enforcement would go down exponentially and the money could be used for rehabilitation, education, and medical care. Look at this site and see how prohibition is costing the tax payers billions every year; just this year alone the US tax payer has paid a total of 28 billion dollars on the war on drugs.

  • Pingback: 4 Ways A Normal American Day Is Absolutely Bonkers To Others | Newstories()

  • Pingback: 4 Ways A Normal American Day Is Absolutely Bonkers To Others | LOL Devil()

  • Judge Rhymehold


  • Chris

    In my opinion, what a grown adult does to themselves is their business! It’s their life, past, present, future. Consider the human condition people! If someone wants to something/anything, they are going to do it regardless of laws or consequences! We have the death penalty in the state I reside for murders! Ask yourself this, has the known penalty of death for someone’s life stopped murder? The answer is NO! It’s time humans stop trying to control one another and their desires! As long as your desires do not infringe upon the rights of others, what is the big deal? Alcohol, cigarettes, even caffeine are all drugs, and have the potential to kill! Grow up world. Live your lives and stop worrying about what everyone else is doing as long as what they are doing isn’t violating your freedoms, your liberties. Some people can go to a bar and drink one beer in a night, some can’t ever get enough and become alcoholics and die. The same rings true for all substances including food! Some eat themselves to death! Criminalization of drugs is a business! If drugs were legalized the courts wouldn’t need as many judges, lawyers, policemen etc. Do you get the picture. Who profited during prohibition? The criminal element profited! That’s who! Legalize drugs, tax the hell out of it, destroy and collapse the criminal element. Use those trillions of excess dollars to reprogram human behavior through advertising, movies, social programs that help reprogram human behaviors. The governments of the world would have more money than they know what to do with. Will some individuals die as a result of their addictive behavior? Yes! But they are the same ones that were using before it was legal! Death is a part of life, we will all die one day. Die in a life of freedom and self accountability!