The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, DM/ITS NDS team has worked the last decade to develop, deploy and manage the NDS system, which facilitates the daily management of licit movements, production, distribution and consumption as well as international trade in all controlled substances in both raw material form as well as in the form of pharmaceutical preparations.

The production, manufacture and trade in narcotic drugs, psychoactive substances, and the precursor chemicals required for the production of illicit drugs, are all controlled nationally and internationally. The purpose of this control is twofold: to prevent diversion of substances into illegal/illicit channels and to ensure that countries obtain the quantities they need for medical, scientific and other legal/licit purposes. Monitoring and managing the movements of controlled substances is a complex process involving numerous partners. Typically, information needs to be exchanged between commercial companies, national drug control administrations, customs officials and the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB).

The National Drug Control System (NDS) addresses all of the above needs and can be used in only one central location or as a distributed system linking, for example, customs points to the central drug control authorities.