From a medical point of view, psychotropics designate chemical substances that act upon the mind, that is on the conscious or unconscious mental life of an individual.
Narcotics include substances that cause stupor, muscular relaxation and a reduction or elimination of sensitivity.
Substances considered as narcotics or psychotropics are defined by law. In most cases, the classification of a substance as narcotics or psychotropics derives from the Single Conventions on Narcotic Drugs (New York) or on Psychotropic Substances (Vienna).
Narcotics and psychotropics are often simply called narcotic drugs.
Obligations and controls
The sale and transport of narcotic drugs, as well as preparations of these substances, can only be made with prior authorization from the Ministry of Health.
One must apply to the Pharmacy and Medication Department of the National Health Directorate for authorization to import or export narcotics and psychotropics.
An import authorization is delivered following written application, stating the nature, quantity of the substances to import, as well as the alkaloid content of the substances. The importer can only take possession of the imported products after verification by the pharmacist-inspector of Public Health that may take samples. The authorization to export from the country of origin must accompany the goods.
All requests for the import of narcotics and psychotropics is subject to payment of a tax.
The application for an export authorization must provide the exact address of the recipient. The export authorization will only be granted upon presentation of an import authorization delivered by the competent authorities of the country of destination.
The transport of these substances can only be made if the envelopes or containers enclosing them show in a clear and legible manner the names and the addresses of the shipper and the recipient.
Authorized operators must keep a special registry indicating the amount of substance that they possess (must be signed by the Mayor or the police commissary). This registry, as well as the invoices, consignment note, written applications or other documentation must be held for ten years and available to the authorities.
Legal shipments of narcotics and psychotropics for export must be accompanied by the export authorization and the import authorization of the destination country as well as the following documents: the commercial documents such as invoices, manifests, customs documents, transport and other shipping documents.
In addition to the import authorization, the import is made using a standard purchase order (with or without authorization) following a template provided in a Ministerial Regulation.
The Pharmacy and Medication Department of the National Health Directorate has authority over applications for import and export of narcotic products.
The import and export of these products can only take place by the customs offices of Luxembourg City.