Drug Abuse in the Global Village
Drug Abuse in Asia



                        Extent of Drug Abuse

Cannabis (ganja/marijuana) is reported the most abused drug in Indonesia, used by 90 per cent of the abusers followed by psychotropic substances, multiple drugs, morphine, heroin, hashish etc. (BAKOLAK 1992).

            It is reported that 0.05 per cent of the population is involved in drug abuse (BAKOLAK 1992) and 10 per cent of cannabis abusers are women (U.N. 1990).

                       Abuser Characteristics

Most abusers range from 15 to 25 years of age (BAKOLAK 1992). Most of them are senior high school students and come from low and middle income families (Indonesia 1992).

                         Regional Variations

No information reported in Annual Reports Questionnaire by 31st December 1993.


Some increase in the use of cannabis was reported through the years 1990 to 1992 (U.N. 1990, 1991, 1992). Large decrease of opium abuse was reported for 1992 (U.N. 1992).

                             Mode of intake

Cannabis is smoked and cocaine is sniffed, while heroin and morphine are injected (U.N. 1992).


The direct and indirect financial costs of drug abuse in Indonesia was estimated as US$ 900,000 in 1990 (U.N. 1990). Cost of treatment per drug dependent per year in State mental hospitals is estimated at 10,000,000 Rupiahs. It is reported that one person died of drug abuse in 1992 (U.N. 1992).

            Some of the increase in criminal behaviour, road accidents, violence etc. are attributed to drug abuse (U.N. 1991).


                           National Strategy

The government established an agency (Bakolak Inpres 6/1971) in 1971 to coordinate the fight against drug trafficking and provide treatment and rehabilitation (Indonesia 1992).

            Indonesia is in the process of amending its Narcotic Law of 1976 with a new bill that covers elements provided in the 1988 UN Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. To comply with the U.N. Policy on the control of precursors and chemical substances, Indonesia has issued regulations for its use and distribution in the country (BAKOLAK 1992).

            The government controls the production, import, transport, supply and distribution of licit drugs to prevent its abuse (Indonesia 1992).

      Structure of National Drug Control Organs

The central government unit responsible for liaison and coordination of national drug control policy is the Coordinating Body of Presidential Instruction No.6/1971.


                           Treaty Adherence

Indonesia is party to the 1961 Convention as amended by the 1972 Protocol. The 1988 Convention is presently translated into the national language.

    Measures taken with respect to Drug Control

Recently enacted laws and regulations:
None reported.

Licensing system for manufacture, trade and distribution:
There is a government-controlled licensing system. For 1990, it was reported that several difficulties were encountered in applying the licensing system to psychotropic substances due to the absence of a national law on psychotropics. No psychotropic substances nor narcotic drugs were reported being produced in 1991. In 1990, chlordiazepide and diazepam were manufactured.

Control system:
(i) Prescription requirement: There is a prescription requirement for supply or dispensation of preparations containing narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. In addition, for narcotic drugs, every drugstore has to submit a monthly report to the Department of Health, Directorate Food and Drugs Control on the drugs dispensed. (ii) Warnings on packages: The law requires warnings on packages or accompanying leaflet information to safeguard the users of preparations containing narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. (iii) Control of non-treaty substances, if any: None reported. (iv) Other administrative measures: None reported.

                            Social Measures

Penal Sanctions related to social measures: In 1991, courts applied measures of treatment, education, after-care, rehabilitation or social reintegration for a drug-related offence neither as an alternative nor in addition to conviction or punishment. In previous years (1988-1990), those measures were applied as an alternative to punishment.

Other social measures: In 1990, religious and other informal leaders established associations or youth groups aiming to fight against drug abuse. Discussions and seminars were held, and lectures were given on how to prevent a further increase of drug abuse.


                          Primary Prevention

Most schools have incorporated drug abuse information into their curricula. Universities have been involved in case studies and in drug awareness campaigns in areas that are susceptible to drug abuse (Indonesia 1992).

            Preventive programmes are conducted via printed and electronic mass-media. Special presentations are made to social groups like (a) women organizations, (b) youth organizations, (c) religious leaders and organizations, (d) parents association, (e) group of professionals (e.g. chamber of commerce) etc. (U.N. 1990).

                 Treatment and Rehabilitation

In 1992, 181 male and 2 female abusers received treatment (U.N. 1992).
            The Ministry of Social Affairs as well as non-governmental organizations provide social rehabilitation services including vocational training, job placement and aftercare (Indonesia 1992).


       Arrests, Convictions and types of offences

It is reported that there were 1,155 persons suspected of crimes involving drugs in 1990, 854 in 1991, and 467 in 1992 including 10, 9 and 2 foreigners in 1990, 1991 and 1992 respectively (BAKOLAK 1992).

            The police are reported to have arrested 275 drug abusers in 1990, 428 in 1991, and 467 in 1992 (Indonesia 1992).

            It is reported that 326 persons were arrested for the illegal cultivation of cannabis (ESCAP 1991).


 In 1990, 0.048 kg of cannabis liquid, 577.775 kg of cannabis herb, 3,050,514 cannabis plants, 208.291 kg cannabis seeds, 0.052 kg of heroin and 0.200 kg of opium were seized among others (U.N. 1990; Other 1990). In 1991, 1,045.004 kg of cannabis herb, 61,177 cannabis plants, 0.563 kg of cannabis seeds, 3 bottles of opium liquid, 1,028 units of depressants, and 442 units of stimulants were reported seized (U.N. 1991; Other 1991). In 1992, the reported figures were 0.020 kg of cannabis liquid, 1,312.659 kg of cannabis herb, 22,976 cannabis plants, 0.080 kg of cannabis seeds, 0.937 kg of heroin, 1,198 units of synthetic narcotics, and 184,000 units of depressants (U.N. 1992).

            About 5 million illegally cultivated cannabis plants were destroyed by the police (ESCAP 1991).

                      Supply Source of Drugs

Ganja (cannabis) is reported to grow abundantly in the wild and remote forests (BAKOLAK 1992). In 1989, 77 hectares of land under cannabis cultivation was detected (ESCAP 1991).

            Heroin is reported smuggled in directly from Thailand or via Malaysia or Singapore (ESCAP 1991).

                       References and Notes

** The Legal, Administrative and Other Action Taken to Implement the International Drug Control Treaties section was prepared by the Secretariat of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs based on Annual Reports Questionnaires for the years 1988-91.

U.N. 1990,1991,1992. Replies to the UNDCP Annual Reports Questionnaires for the years 1990, 1991 and 1992.

BAKOLAK 1992. Report on the Illicit Traffic of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. Bakolak Inpres 6/1971, Coordinating Body for the Implementation of the 6th Presidential Instruction of 1971, Jakarta, October 1992.

ESCAP 1991. Proceedings of the Meeting of Senior Officials on Drug Abuse Issues in Asia and the Pacific. Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, 13-15 February 1991, Tokyo.

Indonesia 1992. Drug Abuse Situation, Demand Reduction Activities in Indonesia and the Need for Country Level and Regional Networking. Holil Soelaiman, Indonesian Delegate, 1992.

Other 1990,1991. Obtained from one or more seizure reports provided by government or other official sources for the years 1990 and 1991.