14 Sep 2023

Drug trafficking / Bad pharma: trafficking illicit medical products in West Africa

This report analyses the market's key characteristics and enablers and assesses national and regional responses.

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West Africa has become a hotspot for the trafficking of medical products, with estimations that the illicit market makes up to 80% of medical products in Burkina Faso and Guinea, the two case studies of this report. Despite its enormous scale, there are gaps in knowledge that this report seeks to address by providing a qualitative analysis of the market’s key characteristics and enablers (corruption and insecurity), and an assessment of national and regional responses.

About the authors

Flore Berger is an analyst in the Observatory of Illicit Economies in West Africa at the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime (GI-TOC), with a geographic focus on Mali and Burkina Faso.

Mouhamadou Kane is an analyst in the Observatory of Illicit Economies in West Africa at GI-TOC, with a geographic focus on Senegal and Guinea.

Image: © Alamy Stock Photo

This publication was produced with the financial support of the European Union and the German Federal Foreign Office under the OCWAR-T project. Its contents are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union or the German Federal Foreign Office. The ISS is also grateful for support from the members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the Hanns Seidel Foundation, the European Union, the Open Society Foundations and the governments of Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden.

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