What is driving sub-Saharan Africa’s rapid rise in drug use?

The number of drug users in sub-Saharan Africa is expected to increase by nearly 150% by 2050, according to new research by the ENACT programme at the Institute for Security Studies, in partnership with the Frederick S Pardee Center for International Futures.

This is just a 5% increase in the proportion of its population experimenting with illicit substances relative to today. But the projected population growth in sub-Saharan Africa means the continent will experience the largest growth in the number of absolute users of any region on the globe.

This is in contrast to a roughly 70% increase in South Asia, a developing region also set to experience a rapid escalation in the number of drug users by 2050.

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