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U.S. Department of State, "2009 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report," March 2009

The U.S. Dept of State Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs produces an annual report describing the efforts of key countries to attack all aspects of the international drug trade in Calendar Year 2008.
March 1, 2009

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Drug and Chemical Control


The People's Republic of China serves as a major drug transit country for international drug markets (though not the United States). Drugs, particularly heroin, come mostly from the Golden Triangle, but Afghanistan is also an important drug source area. China continues to have a domestic heroin consumption problem along with an upsurge in the consumption of synthetic drugs such as Ecstasy and crystal methamphetamine, known as “ice.” Chinese authorities view drug trafficking and abuse as a major threat to China’s national security, its economy and its national and regional stability, but corruption in far-flung drug-producing and drug transit regions of China limits what dedicated enforcement officials can accomplish. Authorities continue to take steps to integrate China into regional and global counternarcotics efforts and cooperation with U.S. counternarcotics officials improved over the past year. China is a party to the 1988 UN Drug Convention.

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Money Laundering and Financial Crimes

Over the past five years, the Government of the People’s Republic of China has made significant progress in developing anti-money laundering (AML) and counterterrorist financing (CTF) measures including legislative reform, strengthening enforcement mechanisms, and implementing international cooperation initiatives. However, money laundering remains a serious concern as China restructures its economy and develops its financial system. Narcotics trafficking, smuggling, trafficking in persons, counterfeiting of trade goods, fraud, tax evasion, corruption, and other financial crimes are major sources of laundered funds. Most money laundering cases currently under investigation involve funds obtained from corruption and bribery. Proceeds of tax evasion, recycled through offshore companies, often return to China disguised as foreign investment and, as such, receive tax benefits. Chinese officials have noted that most acts of corruption in China are closely related to economic activities that accompany illegal money transfers. Observers register increasing concern regarding underground banking and trade-based money laundering.

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