September 16, 2019
 In Articles

Special Political and Decolonization Committee

International Drug Trade

People’s Republic of China

Kyle Korte

Forest Hills Eastern


The People’s Republic of China has a long, contemptuous history with the International Drug Trade, beginning with the First Opium War from 1839-1842. A British victory in the Second Opium War (1856-1860) led the way to legalizing the Indian-Chinese Opium Trade, thereby forgoing any reasonable control on the substance. By the 1890s, nearly 15 million Chinese citizens were addicted. At the turn of the century, the British-sponsored trade sparked international outrage and anti-drug campaigns gained traction across the globe. After the First World War, the League of Nations brought the international community together to condemn the use of opium and other drugs; nations across the world began recognizing the unregulated or ill-regulated trade of drugs as an act of violence. China’s fight against drugs led to the international community’s embrace of drugs as a cause for national emergency. As such, China, and many other states in Asia, believe that drugs are a threat from the outside and the Chinese government takes the issues of illegal drugs and drug trafficking incredibly seriously. Past experiences prove that drugs undermine national security and the government’s ability to govern. The Chinese government, under Xi Jinping, will take any means necessary to protect our society from the harms of drugs.


China, and the international community, takes a strong stance against the use and trade of illicit substances. China has worked with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to combat illicit drug trade worldwide. In recent years, China has implemented a programme with the of of the UNODC to strengthen China-Pakistan border and fight cross-border trafficking at one of the highest crossing points in the world. China alone has imprisoned hundreds of thousands of offenders and will continue to take this strong approach to punish those found to be using or trading drugs. The drug problem is mainly one of western origin. From the British opium trade in the 1800s to the ongoing epidemic in the United States, Asian states must protect ourselves from these western evils. China has the best interest of its citizens in mind as the international community again assesses the international drug trade and ways to counter it.


The international drug trade cannot be undermined without a multilateral approach. Every state must recognize the dangers of drug use and punish the trading and use of them. Nonetheless, the importance of drugs is increasingly apparent. Drawing a line between helpful and harmful is tantamount to our campaign against drug trafficking. In the end, we must have a comprehensive plan, through education and strong action, to put an end to the illicit international drug trade once and for all. It will be necessary to defeat the demand for illicit drugs because no matter what measures we take to try and limit production, if there is a demand, there will be a market to meet it.

  • Kyle Korte

Start typing and press Enter to search