U.S. and Chinese Drug Enforcement Agencies Meet on Synthetic Opioid Efforts

September 29, 2016
Contact: DEA Public Affairs
(202) 307-7977

U.S. and Chinese Drug Enforcement Agencies Meet on Synthetic Opioid Efforts

Meeting held to discuss ways to improve and enhance U.S.-China joint drug investigations

SEP 29 (WASHINGTON) – This week the heads of the national drug-control agencies for the United States and the People’s Republic of China, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg and Director General (DG) Hu Minglang from the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) of the Ministry of Public Security, met at DEA Headquarters in Arlington, Virginia to address the flow of deadly synthetic drugs to the United States and discuss future opportunities for collaboration in our ongoing and mutual fight against a growing drug threat. This meeting follows an announcement by America’s President Obama and China’s President Xi Jinping during the G20 Summit held earlier this month in Hangzhou, China that the U.S. and China will continue to work together to address the illicit supply of fentanyl and its related compounds.

Synthetic drugs such as fentanyl and its related compounds are shipped directly into the United States by traffickers who order them over the Internet. They are also sent to the United States from Mexico by cartels that purchase the drugs in bulk and then smuggle them, alone or mixed with heroin, across America’s Southwest Border. When China controlled 116 chemicals, including certain fentanyl-related compounds, in October of 2015, seizures of those drugs here in the United States dropped significantly.

Acting Administrator Rosenberg praised China’s efforts in controlling fentanyl and its related compounds as well as other New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) and the positive impact this action has had in the US. DG Hu Minglang stated that the drug control cooperation between China and the US has a strong foundation due to the joint investigative achievements that have been made.

Recently, the DEA and the NCB have seen an increased level of cooperation and intelligence sharing. Last month, at the invitation of the NCB, a senior-level DEA delegation traveled to China to learn about their drug control efforts and examine steps to further bilateral cooperation.

Fentanyl, a synthetic opiate painkiller, and related compounds are often mixed with heroin to increase its potency, but dealers and buyers may not know exactly what they are selling or ingesting. These drugs are deadly at very low doses and come in several forms, including powder, blotter paper, tablets, and spray. Overdoses in the U.S. due to these drugs have increased exponentially in recent years, and DEA has issued national warnings about the danger.

More information about fentanyl and other dangerous synthetic opiates can be found at www.dea.gov.