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    29 April 2016

    INCB Learning project wraps up regional training and launches national workshop on availability in Nairobi, Kenya

    VIENNA/NAIROBI, 29 April (UN Information Service) - The International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) Secretariat wrapped up a five-day regional training seminar today for Eastern African national authorities responsible for the implementation of the international drug control conventions. The seminar, which is part of the new global INCB Learning project, was held at the United Nations Office at Nairobi, Kenya from 25 to 29 April 2016, and brought together 17 participants from Burundi, Comoros, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Seychelles. Observers from the African Union Commission (AUC) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) joined the activity and shared their expertise on specific fields related to international drug control, with a particular emphasis on the East Africa region.

    During the seminar, participants strengthened their knowledge of the international drug control framework and mandates of the INCB, as well as the technical reporting requirements of the conventions relating to narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursor chemicals. Participants also learned about INCB tools, such as the International Import Export System (I2ES) and the Pre-Export Notification (PEN) Online system, used by Member States exporting precursor chemicals to alert the national competent authorities in the importing country to the details of the export transaction.

    The WHO participated in a session on the availability of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances for medical and scientific purposes. According to the Availability Report of the INCB, published in February of this year, the main obstacles to the availability of pain relief medication and psychotropic substances worldwide include the lack of training and awareness, fear of drug dependence and limited financial resources. Enough pain relief substances and raw materials are produced to cover global demand, yet three out of four people in the world have only limited or no access to pain relief.

    The AUC praised the initiative of the INCB to provide closer assistance to competent national authorities in the area of drug control in East Africa, and highlighted the importance of tackling the inadequate availability of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances for medical and scientific purposes in the region.

    The INCB Secretariat is also holding a national awareness-raising workshop for Kenya on the availability of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances for medical and scientific purposes today. The workshop is bringing together different Kenyan authorities, health care professionals and civil society as well as representatives from the AUC, WHO, UNODC and the international community to discuss the importance of ensuring adequate access to medicines for pain management and the treatment of mental health conditions. The INCB 2015 Availability Report is being presented at the event. Representatives of the United States Embassy and the Australian High Commission in Nairobi, whose Governments sponsor the Learning project, are also joining the workshop.

    Both activities are part of the global INCB Learning project launched in early 2016 to provide technical assistance to Member States in complying with the provisions of the international drug control conventions in the regulatory control of the licit trade in narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursor chemicals. The ultimate goal of the project is to ensure the appropriate availability of internationally controlled substances for medical and scientific purposes, while preventing their abuse and diversion to illicit channels. The project is funded by the governments of the United States and Australia.

    Other components of the global INCB Learning project include the production of e-learning modules on the reporting requirements of the drug conventions, as well as the development of a web interface to allow the general public open access to INCB data currently made available through its publications. The further development of the global INCB Learning project will depend on further contributions from Member States.


    INCB is the independent, quasi-judicial body charged with promoting and monitoring Government compliance with the three international drug control conventions: the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances, and the 1988 Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. Established by the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961,  the thirteen members of the Board  are elected in a personal capacity by the Economic and Social Council for terms of five years.

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    For further information, please contact:

    Global INCB Learning project
    Telephone for inquiries: (+43-1) 26060 4458
    Email: learning[at]

    INCB Secretariat 
    Telephone for media inquiries: (+43-1) 26060 4163
    Email: secretariat[at]