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Home NATIONALDecree to prohibit 65 new psychoactive substances from Sept 28
Sat, 12 Sep, 2015 01:32:50 AM
FTimes Report, Sep 12


A government decree prohibits production, import, storage, sale and handing over of 65 new psychoactive substances, like NPS not monitored currently, with effect from 28 September 2015, according a press release of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health.

Possession and use of these substances will not lead to a penalty. Of the prohibited substances, 37 are either synthetic cannabinoids or cathinones, which are the most common groups of all new psychoactive substances, said the release issued on Thursday.

Seven new psychoactive substances will be added to Finland's list of narcotics, prohibiting production, import, storage, sale, handing over as well as possession and use of those substances in the future and will be punishable by law, said the release.

Synthetic cannabinoids include substances with a stronger psychoactive effect than cannabis and the side effects of which can be harmful. These increase a person's risk of psychosis, according to the release.

Synthetic cathinones are related to the active substances in the khat drug. The best known cathinone is MDPV, which is classified as a narcotic. The third largest group of the now prohibited substances is phenethylamines, which have hallucinogenic and stimulative effects.
All the prohibited NPS are not yet commonly used in Finland, and not all have thus far proved to be very dangerous.

 The Finnish Medicines Agency Fimea, which is responsible for the evaluation of NPS, has proposed that the substances that have now been prohibited be added to the list of psychoactive substances banned from the consumer market. 

The substances have also been reported to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction's early warning system.
Substances added to the system are those that have been observed in Europe and which have resulted in harm.
Finland's Narcotics Act amended in December 2014 provides that new psychoactive substances are now monitored pursuant to the law. A definition for new psychoactive substances that can be harmful to one's health and are banned from the consumer market was added to the Narcotics Act.

 However, no such information has been reported on these substances that would justify their classification as narcotics.

 Psychoactive substances banned on the consumer market are listed in an updated version of the government decree (1130/2014).
An amendment to the government decree will enter into effect on 28 September 2015.

The amendment is based on a decision by the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs during its General Assembly in March 2015. The substances are the first new psychoactive substances that were placed under broad-scoped monitoring pursuant to an UN convention, according to the release.

The use of new psychoactive substances can be hazardous to a person's physical and mental health, as well as his/her social functional capacity.

Banning these substances will not completely eliminate their use, but it will prevent or slow down their spread to new user groups, especially young people.

The classification of these substances will also improve their monitoring by authorities, said the release.
The substances added to the list of narcotics include acetylfentanyl and oxyfentanil, as well as five other dangerous substances—2-MeO-PCP, 3-MeO-PCP, 4-MeO-PCP, AB-CHMINACA, MDMB-CHMICA.

Of these substances, authorities have begun to monitor 2-MeO-PCP as a so-called positional isomer for 3-MeO-PCP and 4-MeO-PCP and it has yet to be observed in narcotic use. It is the first time that a positional isomer for a substance considered hazardous to human health has been classified as a narcotic in Finland.  

Phencyclidine is classified a narcotic in the UN Convention on psychotropic substances, which have hallucinogenic effects and lead to sensory deprivation.  

The same amendment to the decree will see ten new psychoactive substances already monitored as narcotics in Finland transferred to the decree's different appendices, as these will now also be monitored pursuant to the UN convention.

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