The rising price of methamphetamine, or P, shows a crackdown on the drug is working, says Prime Minister John Key.
mean price of a gram rose 6 per cent to $768 in one year, according to
data in a progress report for the government's two-and-a-half-year-old
Tackling Methamphetamine Action Plan, released on Tuesday.
frontline efforts against the P trade were starting to show results, Mr
Key said, as he praised the hard line taken on the drug, while warning
the battle was not over.
"Six months ago there were signs that
supply chains were being disrupted, due to the efforts both at the
border and domestically."
The type of border seizures were
changing, with precursor materials, such as ephedrine and
pseudoephedrine, down 44 per cent in one year, but seizures of
methamphetamine itself were rising. In the first nine months of this
year, the 23kg seized nearly matched all that recovered in 2010.
That showed manufacturing was being pushed offshore, Mr Key said.
new laws to confiscate the proceeds of crime, police have so far
identified about $92 million worth of assets derived from crime - nearly
half of that from methamphetamine crimes.
Massey University drug
expert Chris Wilkins told NZ Newswire law changes making the precursor
drugs prescription-only and strengthening border controls had hurt
The price of P had gone up about 28 per cent in the last five years and its potency had declined.
was hard to say if the overall supply had reduced. Methamphetamine use
peaked around 2002 when a lot of people started trying it, but they
eventually realised it was not a good drug and use had declined - apart
from among those entrenched users.
Dr Wilkins said the next
fashion in drugs appeared to be in the use of ecstasy, where synthetic
chemicals were becoming part of that scene.