Regional Programme for Afghanistan and Neighbouring Countries (Phase II)


Project Duration: December 2017 - December 2019

EC Contribution: €3.000.000    


The project:

The UNODC Regional Programme for Afghanistan and Neighbouring Countries is UNODC's framework to support the countries of West and Central Asia to develop regional and international joint responses to counter the harmful impact of illicit narcotics trafficking and transnational organized crime on security, governance and social and economic development.


The objective:

The overall objective of the Regional Programme is to facilitate regional cooperation and to improve and streamline coordination between the eight RP member countries in addressing illicit drug trafficking, illicit drug use and crime. By bringing countries together to focus on harmonizing national policies, strategies, and legislation that address illicit drugs and crime as well as support effective law enforcement operations, sharing of best practices and evidence-based approaches to prevention and treatment strategies, the Regional Programme seeks to strengthen the effectiveness of collective responses to the threats posed by illicit drug trafficking and crime in West and Central Asia.

UNODC is a global leader in addressing the problem of illicit drug use and transnational crime, and is mandated to assist Member States in their struggle against illicit drugs, crime and terrorism. UNODC has an important role in assisting States Parties to the international conventions in the implementation of their obligations under the international drug control treaties (the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961 (as amended in 1972), the Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971, and the United Nations Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances of 1988), the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its Protocols and the UN Convention Against Corruption, as well as international anti-terrorism instruments. Acting as the custodian of United Nations standards and norms in crime prevention and criminal justice, UNODC has the mandate to assist the Member States in reforming their criminal justice systems to ensure the practical application of these standards.

The first phase of the RP, which ran from 2011-2015, is now completed, with an in‐depth, mid‐term evaluation conducted in late 2014. The evaluation noted that " for regional solutions to work, there is a requirement to generate regional dialogue, increase regional cooperation and to implement joint solutions " and that the Regional Programme was both timely and highly relevant being one of the few international mechanisms that could bring these countries together to focus on drug and crime issues on a regular basis. Likewise, it noted that "regional solutions must not only be brokered, but nurtured and supported" and that success would take time.

The Regional Programme is now well established as UNODC's regional mechanism for supporting greater impact in West and Central Asia and on 31st May, 2016, Phase II of the RP was launched at the Programme Steering Committee Meeting at Issyk-Kul, Kyrgyz Republic.

UNODC, together with its government as well as international and regional partners and civil society stakeholders, will continue to work towards achieving the overall objectives of the organization and the Member States by maintaining a focus on the four key sub-programmes comprising the current Regional Programme:

  • Sub-programme 1: Regional Law Enforcement Cooperation
  • Sub-programme 2: International / Regional Cooperation in Legal Matters
  • Sub-programme 3: Prevention and Treatment of Drug Dependence including Vulnerable Groups
  • Sub-programme 4: Trends and Impacts

The development of the Phase II involved discussions and input from over 150 individuals representing key partner Ministries, agencies and counterparts in the Member States, with the second phase being more ambitious in that it builds on the successes from the first phase, including lessons learned and recommendations from the recent independent evaluation of the programme.



Periodical updates on key project events and news highlights from UNODC Afghanistan and Neighbouring Countries are available here.  


Photo credit UNODC RP for Afghanistan and Neighboring countries 



UNODC Regional Programme For Afghanistan And Neighboring Countries

Jeremy Milsom

Senior Programme Coordinator


Telephone: +93 793422242