Import of illegal drugs to the country does not seem to have been affected by currency restrictions. However, according to a recent study by the National Center of Addiction Medicine (SÁÁ), price increases also apply to the black drug market.
SÁÁ detected higher prices in some categories of drugs since the crisis hit, including cannabis and amphetamines, although the increase seems insignificant compared to the increase of the consumer price index, Morgunbladid reports.
The going price of one gram of amphetamine has been between ISK 4,500 and 5,500 in the past year and shortly before the collapse of the banking system in October 2008, it cost ISK 4,290 (USD 36.70, EUR 28.58), according to SÁÁ. Last month, the price had risen to ISK 5,630 (USD 48.14, EUR 37.51).
Thórarinn Tyrfingsson, senior physician at SÁÁ’s Vogur hospital, said he had also noticed an increase in the price of subscription medicine, such as Ritalin and morphine.
In the case of one substance, cocaine, the price has dropped since late September 2008, from ISK 12,400 to 11,500 (USD 106.09 to 98.39, EUR 82.62 to 76.62) per gram. According to police, demand for cocaine has dropped.
“Buy Icelandic” is also the motto for substance abusers, it seems, since police are constantly confiscating homegrown marijuana plants; 530 last month, almost as many as during the entire year 2008.
Karl Steinar Valsson, head of the Capital Region Police’s narcotics department, said the public has been incredibly cooperative lately and notified police of drug-related cases through their drug hotline, to which anonymous calls can be made.
Police are determined to uproot cultivation of marijuana in Iceland, to which many have turned since the crisis hit; an abundance of greenhouse lamps have been reported stolen in the past months.