US, China relations turning ‘lethal’; Beijing reluctant to cooperate in fixing Fentanyl menace

5 October, 2022 | Pragati Singh

fentanyl Headlines

Apart from the Taiwan issue, US-China ties have deteriorated as a result of Beijing's suspension of assistance to combat drugs trafficking, especially illegally manufactured Fentanyl, according to ...

Apart from the Taiwan issue, US-China ties have deteriorated as a result of Beijing’s suspension of assistance to combat drugs trafficking, especially illegally manufactured Fentanyl, according to media sources.

Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid permitted for treating extreme pain and advanced cancer agony, has resulted in overdose and death instances connected to illegal drug manufacture. According to the investigative journalism blog Reportika, a US organisation investigating drug trafficking and distribution had prohibited websites publicly selling Fentanyl in over 20 languages. According to numerous accounts, these drug-selling facilities are thought to be in China.

The US also searched the dark web for individuals engaged in the online sale of Fentanyl. US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping spoke about the Fentanyl crisis during a phone discussion in July.

As a result of this, both nations agreed to assign their teams to do follow-up work. However, things did not proceed as planned. To protest US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s travel to Taiwan, China halted cooperation with the US in combating drugs trafficking.

Earlier, Rahul Gupta, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) said, “disappointed by the move in light of the ongoing overdose epidemic driven by fentanyl that has claimed more than 100,000 lives in the US in the past year. At a time when illicit fentanyl continues to claim a life every five minutes, it’s unacceptable that China is withholding cooperation that would help to bring to justice individuals who traffic these illicit drugs and who engage in this global criminal enterprise.”

China is a hub of illegal Fentanyl supply chains. According to data cited by the media portal, Investigative Journalism Reportika, China was the source of 97 pc of inbound shipments of high-purity Fentanyl during 2016 and 2017 and over 70 pc after it.

Opioid vendors show more inclination to work in China’s industrial hinterlands in view of the less strict security. China sends active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) and precursors to the final Fentanyl to countries in South Asia like Myanmar.

After fixing its feet in these countries, China while taking informal route transport this deadly drug to countries like Australia, Mexico, and European markets. From there, this drug is then smuggled to countries like the USA, Canada, New Zealand, and Brazil and in limited amounts to Africa, reported the media portal, according to the media portal, Investigative Journalism Reportika.

This Chinese drug menace has laid a great impact on China-US relationship, with the report saying that this issue has more crucial even when compared to the potential of a military conflict over Taiwan.

Every year, thousands of overdose deaths are recorded in the United States as a result of illegal Fentanyl produced from Chinese raw ingredients. The consequences of this fatal medicine have not just lately become apparent in the United States. The United States has stayed under the grip of the drug problem. Overdoses have killed about 1 million Americans since 1999.

However, the establishment of the Chinese supply chain exacerbated an already dire situation. Overdose fatalities have surged since 2012, when China began providing the US market for illegal opioids.