The main focus of this chapter is on the European Union’s approach towards combating illicit drug trafficking, and how this affects Central European Countries (CECs) in their preparations for accession into the EU. To this end we draw from the findings of a research project funded by the European Commission as part of the INCO-Copernicus programme.1
This examined the impact of EU illicit drug trafficking control policies in three Central European countries, namely the Czech Republic, Hungary and Lithuania. We begin with an overview of the wider context of apparent EU concerns, drawing attention to recent EU developments in drug trafficking control strategies. We then critically consider some of the inconsistencies, realities and impacts in the case-study countries. The chapter concludes by asserting that, whilst there is demonstrably political will in all three countries to conform (even to some extent in excess) to EU direction given the promise of accession, there is largely a mismatch between this and feasible practical implementation.