Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Captagon trade on the rise

Captagon is one of several brand names for the drug compound fenethylline hydrochloride. Captagon was the trade name of the drug when it was initially patented in Germany in the early 1960s. It was used to treat attention deficit and narcolepsy. By the 1980's the U.S. government declared it a controlled substance with no accepted medical use. Manufacturing of the drug ceased in the developed world. Trade in Captagon in the Middle East grew exponentially in 2021 to top $5b. Syria is the main producer and Saudi Arabia the main consumer. The market value of the Captagon produced in Syria far outstrips legal exports and has resulted in the country being branded a narco state.
Captagon has so far only been consumed on a very small scale in Europe but that has the potential to change. Sold for less than a dollar in parts of Syria to users, the same tablet can fetch more than $20 in Saudi Arabia. Captagon is a highly addictive amphetamine.