The abrogation of opium smoking and selling had created a new trend of drug abusing and trafficking among countries in Southeast Asia. Other drugs such as morphine and heroin rapidly took place of opium, especially heroin which was easy to consume and easy to avoid detection and suppression. Because of tremendous benefits gained from selling heroin, the dealers had hired foreign experts in producing heroin to come over and set up heroin clandestine labs in Thailand.
Realizing that narcotics problem has become one of the most serious problems that need to be tackled, the Royal Thai Government and other members of the INTERPOL who attended the INTERPOL Meeting on Narcotics Control in Lahor City, Pakistan during January 19-23, 1960, concurred to the recommendation that the narcotics control office should be set up in each country to act as a coordinating body in carrying out drug prevention and suppression activities domestically and internationally.
Responding to the recommendation of the mentioned meeting, the Royal Thai Government had first set up the Central Narcotics Board on April 11, 1961. This Board was chaired by Director-General of the Police Department, and members of the Board were composed of Deputy Permanent Secretaries, Directors and Representatives from various agencies concerned. The Board had set up Thailand Central Bureau of Narcotics, located in the Police Department, to act a coordinating body in carrying out drug suppression and prevention, and other activities in accordance with commitments made to foreign countries and international organizations.
The Central Narcotics Board also appointed various Sub-Committees in each field, and Regional Sub-Committees to coordinate with the Central Bureau of Narcotics. Moreover, the 7th Sub-Division in Crime Suppression Division was also set up in the Police Department as a special unit being responsible for carrying out drug suppression activities.
Although the Central Narcotics Board had been established in accordance with the resolution of the Cabinet, no legislation was issued to second or to confer the authorities of the Board. Functions of the Board, therefore, automatically terminated whenever there was a change of government. Though the reorganization of the new Board was done in every following government, the Board was still not able to work at its fullest capacity, and was confronted with various problems. As a result, the spreading of drug had a trend to increase dramatically.
Until on November 16, 1976, the present Narcotics Control Board (NCB) was established by the provision of the Narcotics Control Act B.E. 2519 (1976) and the Office of the Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) was also set up to act as a national coordinating body for prevention and suppression of drugs and a secretariat to the Narcotics Control Board under the Office of the Prime Minister.
Eventually, on October 1, 2002, the Office of the Narcotics Control Board has been transferred to be affiliated with the Ministry of Justice as an independent body under Minister of Justice according to the Act on Organization of Ministries, Sub-Ministries, Departments, B.E. 2545 (2002).