Jamaica has been named by United States President Donald Trump among major drug-transit or illicit drug-producing countries.
The designation was made in Trump’s Presidential Determination on Major Drug Transit or Major Illicit Drug Producing Countries for Fiscal Year 2020 report.
The document, dated August 8, was submitted as a memorandum to the Secretary of State.
America’s Foreign Relations Authorization Act defines a major illicit drug-producing country as one in which:
(A) one thousand hectares or more of illicit opium poppy is cultivated or harvested during a year.
(B) one thousand hectares or more of illicit coca is cultivated or harvested during a year.
(C) five thousand hectares or more of illicit cannabis is cultivated or harvested during a year, unless the president determines that such illicit cannabis production does not significantly affect the United States.
The term ‘major drug-transit country’ refers to a country:
(A) that is a significant direct source of illicit narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances significantly affecting the United States.
(B) through which are transported such drugs or substances.
Other states on the 22-country list include The Bahamas, Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, and Venezuela.
“The reason countries are placed on the list is the combination of geographic, commercial, and economic factors that allow drugs to transit or be produced, even if a government has engaged in robust and diligent narcotics-control measures,” Trump said.
“A country’s presence on the foregoing list is not necessarily a reflection of its government’s counternarcotics efforts or level of cooperation with the United States,” he added.
Trump said that his administration has devoted unprecedented resources to combating the scourge of illicit drugs in the United States, “including by strengthening our country’s borders and expanding programs to prevent illicit drug use and aid the recovery and treatment of those who need it”.
“We are making steady progress to turn the tide of our country’s drug epidemic, but more needs to be accomplished. This includes further efforts beyond our nation’s borders by governments of countries where dangerous illegal drugs originate,” Trump said.