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Drug Policy
  • China’s drug control strategy focuses on prevention, education, illicit crop eradication, interdiction, rehabilitation, commercial regulation, and law enforcement.
  • The Ministry of Public Security (MPS) Narcotics Control Bureau is the primary national drug enforcement entity and works in conjunction with provincial public security bureau offices. The Anti-Smuggling Bureau (ASB) within the General Administration of Customs is responsible for the enforcement of China’s drug control laws at seaports, airports, and land border check points.
  • Treatment for SUD is compulsory
Treatment Services
  • There are two main strategies for treating addiction in China: (1) enrolment in compulsory detoxification centres, and (2) sentencing to “education through labour” camps.
  • Addicts are often forced to go through so-called “dry detoxification” (without any medication to alleviate physical pains). After “detoxification,” addicts undergo rehabilitation, which mainly involves physical labour, education, and group discussions featuring mostly self-criticism.
  • All addicts are sent to compulsory rehabilitation centres established by
    governments at all levels
  • Those who resume drugs after receiving compulsory treatment are sent to re-education-through-labour where they are forced to undergo treatment side by side with re-education through physical labour.
  • At present, China has a total of 746 compulsory rehabilitation centres and 168 treatment and re-education-through-labour centres.
  • Governments at all levels and grassroots organisations actively help rehabilitated addicts to solve concrete problems in their life and work, so that they will not be discriminated against in employment or admission to higher education.
  • methadone maintenance therapy (MMT) (mostly for those with financial means)
Prevention Services
  • China’s National Narcotics Control Commission has an outreach program to raise awareness of the negative health effects of drug abuse and to promote drug prevention.
  • Needle exchange programs began to appear in limited regions for many years to prevent the spread of HIV infection among intravenous drug users. (However, drug use is considered an administrative offense and addicts caught carrying heroin paraphernalia could be detained and sent to compulsory detoxification centres. )
  • propaganda campaigns are regularly launched in China as the main venue to indoctrinate and mobilize the masses to combat illicit drugs. The government has always portrayed its fight against illicit drugs as a people’s war, stirring up public sentiments and enlisting participation from the public.
  • design and organize anti-narcotic campaigns targeting specific geographical regions, such as villagers in rural areas and migrant laborers in the cities
  • Drug trafficking is among the few criminal offenses that that qualifies for the death penalty in China.
  • people who smuggle, sell, transport, or manufacture heroin or methamphetamine in an amount greater than 50 grams can be sentenced to 15 years in prison, life imprisonment, or death.
  • Strict border controls, around the clock checkpoints on motorways, police establish inspections at all major ports of exits to other provinces and countries, including airports and train stations.
  • In recent years, the Chinese government has stepped up its effort to improve re-entry efforts and to establish the so-called “drug-free communities” (also called drug-free counties, drugfree cities, or drug-free districts) by implementing surveillance of released addicts, organizing support groups, and sponsoring various anti-drug education campaigns.