Most of the drugs in the illicit traffic are products of illicit processing or synthesis from precursor chemicals. The concept of commodity control to those chemicals used for the manufacture and synthesis of drugs abuse is incorporated of Article 12 into "the United Nations Convention against Illicit Traffic of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances", 1988 (the Vienna Convention). In the provision, a control list of 22 critical chemicals commonly diverted for the production of the major drugs of abuse is established.
The government of the Republic of China (ROC) has expressed her concern and participated actively in the international convention. In our domestic chemical control system, there were 24 precursor chemicals subsumed. Department of Health (DOH) is responsible for 7 pharmaceutical chemicals and Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) is in charge of the other 17 industrial chemical items, respectively.
The goal of the system is to prevent diversion of precursor chemicals rather than to hinder.