23 January 1912

The International Opium Convention is signed at The Hague.

The International Opium Convention, also known as the Hague Convention or the International Opium Act, was the first international drug control treaty. It was signed on January 23, 1912, during the International Opium Conference held in The Hague, Netherlands. The primary goal of the convention was to address the global issue of the opium trade and its associated problems, such as addiction and illicit trafficking.

The major provisions of the convention included:

Controlled Opium Production: The convention aimed to regulate the production of opium for medicinal and scientific purposes. Participating countries agreed to establish a system to license and control the cultivation of opium poppies.

Limited Opium Exports: The treaty sought to reduce the international trade in opium. It established limitations on the export and import of opium, as well as other derivatives like morphine and heroin.

Criminalization of Non-Medical Uses: The convention criminalized the non-medical use of opium, morphine, and cocaine. It encouraged participating nations to pass domestic laws to regulate and control the distribution of these substances.

The International Opium Convention laid the groundwork for subsequent international drug control efforts. It was followed by other treaties, such as the 1925 Geneva Convention and the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961, which further strengthened and expanded the framework for global drug control. These agreements formed the basis for the modern international drug control system.