This report offers a sizing and analysis of the developing trends around drugs in the Maghreb. It begins by detailing the production of narcotics in the Maghreb, including both cannabis and poppies. Next, it focuses on the trafficking of these products, exploring the types of drugs that transit the region, the routes they take and the groups involved in their movement.

The report then looks at drug consumption trends in the Maghreb, before detailing the impacts of narcotics on state capacity, security and public health and ending with brief recommendations.

Drug cultivation and trafficking routes in North Africa

A rising tide: Trends in production, trafficking and consumption of drugs in North Africa

Download PDF
Share this article


Matt Herbert

Matt is the Research Manager for the North Africa and Sahel Observatory of the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime. He is a specialist in fragility and stabilization, with a focus on security sector reform and governance, border security, transnational organized crime, and irregular migration.

He has worked on security sector reform, irregular migration, and organized crime issues in North and West Africa, consulted on security, development, and public health issues in East Africa, worked on transnational organized crime for the state of New Mexico, and served as a policy aide to New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson.

He has authored a number of articles and reports on transnational organized crime, irregular migration, border security, and insurgency with organizations such as the Institute for Security Studies, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, Atlantic Council, Washington Post, and U.S. Institute of Peace

Matt holds a PhD in International Relations from The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, Tufts University, with a sub-specialization in security studies and law & development. He has a Masters in Law and Diplomacy from the same institution, and a joint Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts from The College of Santa Fe.

Read more

Max Gallien

Max Gallien is a political scientist specialising in the politics of informal and illegal economies, the political economy of development, and North African politics.

Currently a Research Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) at the University of Sussex, having completed a PhD in International Development at the London School of Economics.

Read more