Finland Country Drug Report 2018

Drug markets

The Finnish drug market is stable, with cannabis products remaining the illicit drugs most commonly seized by the law enforcement agencies, while amphetamines, MDMA/ecstasy and other synthetic psychoactive substances and narcotic pharmaceuticals remain important.

In general, the volumes of seizures fluctuate from one year to the next and are affected by the priorities of law enforcement agencies in addressing large-scale smuggling. Cannabis resin mainly originates in Morocco, reaching the Finnish market from Central or Eastern Europe. The availability of heroin in the market plummeted after 2001, and heroin was replaced by buprenorphine-based opioid substitution medications, typically originating from Lithuania and France. In 2016, almost 74 000 Subutex (buprenorphine) tablets were seized in Finland.

Synthetic stimulants (amphetamines and MDMA) originating in Western Europe are brought into the country via Estonia, Lithuania, Sweden and, sometimes, Russia.

Since 2016, a reportedly rising threat is the trafficking of counterfeit Rivotril (which belongs to the class of benzodiazepines, containing Clonazepam, and is classified as a narcotic substance in Finland) from Central Europe to Finland, among other Nordic countries.

The increased availability of new psychoactive substances is one of the emerging trends on the Finnish drug scene, and they are usually ordered online from abroad. In recent years, concerns over an increase in the domestic cultivation of cannabis have been expressed.



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Methodological note: Analysis of trends is based only on those countries providing sufficient data to describe changes over the period specified. The reader should also be aware that monitoring patterns and trends in a hidden and stigmatised behaviour like drug use is both practically and methodologically challenging. For this reason, multiple sources of data are used for the purposes of analysis in this report. Caution is therefore required in interpretation, in particular when countries are compared on any single measure. Detailed information on methodology and caveats and comments on the limitations in the information set available can be found in the EMCDDA Statistical Bulletin.