According to press reports, poppy growth in Afghanistan has declined by 95% since the Taliban banned the crop in April 2022.
The ban has caused a drastic reduction in opium production, which is the main ingredient for heroin and other illicit drugs.
The UN report published on Sunday, November 5, 2023, stated that poppy cultivation has collapsed from 233,000 hectares to 10,800 hectares, and opium production has plummeted from 6,200 tons to 333 tons in 2023.
The UN report also warned of the humanitarian consequences and risks of the sudden contraction of the opium economy, as many farmers have lost their income and livelihoods.
The report estimated that farmers’ incomes have fallen by 92% to $110 million this year, compared to $1.36 billion in 2022.
The report urged for urgent humanitarian assistance and sustainable alternative development efforts to help the rural communities and the Afghan economy.
The Taliban have vowed to end illegal drug production in Afghanistan, which was the world’s leading producer of opium and heroin.
The Taliban have said that they are following Islamic law and protecting the country from the harms of drugs.
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Edited by Jesus Chan
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