Germany Country Drug Report 2019

Drug markets

Indoor and outdoor cannabis cultivation sites have been dismantled in Germany, with a small increase in the total number of cannabis plants seized in 2017. Cannabis products of various origins are trafficked through the country and account for the majority of seizures. Herbal cannabis seized in Germany mostly originates from Albania, but also from the Netherlands or Spain, although some may be seized in transit to other markets, such as Switzerland, Italy or the United Kingdom. Cannabis resin primarily originates from Morocco and is imported via the Netherlands and, to a lesser degree, Spain, and is usually in transit to other EU countries.

The synthetic drugs market, which is partly supplied by local production, is complex. The methamphetamine market has experienced an expansion in the eastern regions of the country in recent years. The number of laboratories reported to be dismantled decreased from 15 in 2016 to 14 in 2017. The Netherlands and Czechia remain the main producing countries for amphetamine and methamphetamine on the German market. The Netherlands is also the main supplier of MDMA/ecstasy that is seized in Germany, and the most recent data indicate a drop in the number of tablets seized in 2017. There are signs that Germany is being used as a transit country for MDMA trafficked to non-European destinations, such as the US.

Heroin seized in Germany usually originates from Afghanistan, Pakistan or Iran. Qualitative data suggest that, in 2017, the largest quantities of heroin were imported from Iran and, to a lesser extent, Turkey and the Netherlands. The total quantity of heroin seized decreased slightly in 2017.

Cocaine seized in Germany is usually imported from South America and enters Germany through other European countries. Seizures of cocaine increased more than threefold compared with previous years.

Drug supply reduction activities in Germany are driven by the objectives set by the individual Länder and depend largely on local priorities. In general, the activities aim to prevent illicit cultivation/production and trafficking of illicit substances, including new psychoactive substances. The main focus is on organised crime groups and money laundering.

Data on the retail price and purity of the main illicit substances seized are shown in the ‘Key statistics’ section.

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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.