VII. Developing International Cooperation in Drug Control

It is highly necessary to strengthen international cooperation in drug control to promote the battle against narcotics worldwide and radically solve the drug problem in China. On the basis of clinging to the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence (mutual respect for territorial integrity and sovereignty, mutual non- aggression, non-interference in each other's internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence), China has all along actively participated in and promoted international cooperation in drug control and played an important role in this field.

The Chinese government takes an active part in international affairs connected with drug control. In June 1985, approved by the NPC Standing Committee, China acceded to the UN 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances that had been revised by the 1972 Protocol.

In September 1989, China obtained the approval of the NPC Standing Committee to accede to the UN Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, becoming one of the first member countries to it. Beginning in 1984, China has sent delegations many times to attend international drug control meetings held by the United Nations, the International Criminal Police Organization, the World Customs Organization and the World Health Organization. In October 1989, China held the Asian Region Anti-Drug Seminar in Beijing and in November 1996, hosted the International Stimulant Specialists Meeting in Shanghai. The Chinese government sent delegations to take part in the 17th and 20th UN special General Assembly sessions on drug control in February 1990 and June 1998, declaring the Chinese government's resolute anti-drug stand, policies and measures to the international community.

China is an active supporter and promoter of cooperation in drug control in the sub-region, as initiated by the UN. In May 1991, the NNCC of China hosted the first meeting of senior officials of China, Thailand, Myanmar and the United Nations Drug Control Program (UNDCP) in Beijing, to discuss the proposal on multilateral cooperation against drug abuse in the sub-region. In June 1992, China, Myanmar and the UNDCP signed the China/Myanmar/ UNDCP Joint Cooperation Project on Drug Control in Rangoon, Myanmar. In October 1993, China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos and the UNDCP signed the Memorandum of Understanding on Narcotic Drugs Control, which stressed keeping contacts between high officials to further the cooperation in drug control in the sub-region. On May 1995, China, Vietnam, Laos, Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia and the UNDCP convened the first minister-level meeting on cooperation in sub-region drug control in Beijing. The meeting adopted the Beijing Declaration and signed the Sub-region Drug Control Program of Action. In 1999, the Chinese government sent delegations to attend the sub-region minister-level meetings in Japan and Laos to continue to promote enthusiastic cooperation in drug control in the sub-region.

China has constantly strengthened bilateral and multilateral cooperation in drug control with other countries. In 1985 China began to cooperate with the United States in drug control, and in 1987 the governments of the two nations signed the Sino-US Memorandum of Cooperation in Narcotic Drugs Control. In 1997, the heads of the two states signed the Sino-US Joint Statement containing contents on cooperation in drug control, which upgraded this cooperation between the two countries to a new level.

Subsequently, the governments of China and the United States mutually accredited anti-drug liaison officers. Meanwhile, China attached importance to the cooperation in drug control with Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. In April 1996, China and Russia signed the Agreement on Cooperation Against Illicit Trafficking and Abuse of Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. In 1998 the heads of state of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan signed a joint statement, taking cracking down drug-connected and transnational crimes as major contents in cooperation among the five countries. In addition, the Chinese government has signed bilateral agreements on cooperation in drug control with the governments of Mexico, India, Pakistan, Colombia and Tajikistan.

For many years, China has developed cooperation in many forms with the United States, Canada, Japan, France, Australia, Thailand, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia in anti-drug information exchange, training and law enforcement. Since 1996, China has successively established a liaison officer system of anti-drug law- enforcement cooperation in border areas with Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam and Russia. Besides, the police authorities of China, the United States, Canada, Japan and the Republic of Korea have on many occasions jointly cracked cases of illicit traffic in drugs through international anti-drug information exchange and judicial cooperation, effectively deterring transnational drug-related crimes.

The Chinese government has done its utmost to enthusiastically help bordering countries to unfold anti-drug combat. Beginning in 1990, China has actively helped the northern parts of Myanmar and Laos, where poppies were traditionally planted, to promote alternative development by means of providing technological and agricultural support and developing tourism resources. These efforts, to some degrees, have promoted the economic and social development in that region, consequently helping to reduce the threats brought to China and international community by the " Golden Triangle" drugs. At the same time, China has received energetic support and help from the UNDCP in international cooperation.

Over the past 20 years or so, China has made outstanding achievements in drug control and gained a shower of praise from international community. In the meantime, the Chinese government has soberly realized that the waves of the rising international drug tide is buffeting China more severely than ever and such situation could not be eliminated in the short run. The drug problem is still rampant in China and therefore the fight against drug abuse in China is a heavy task, and there is a long way ahead in this regard. At this important moment when a new millennium is dawning on mankind and the old century is giving place to the new, international community has realized more unanimously than ever the urgency and importance of drug control. It is a common wish of people of all countries to solve the drug problem as soon as possible and to build this planet into a healthy, civilized, happy and beautiful world. During the new century, the Chinese government will wage an unremitting, thoroughgoing struggle against drugs nationwide and will not stop its efforts until drugs are eradicated. The Chinese government will, as always, strengthen cooperation with other countries and make unremitting efforts to completely eliminate narcotic drugs and build a world free from the drug scourge.

Note: The statistical data mentioned here do not include the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Macao Special Administrative Region and Taiwan Province.