The RCMP and the Chinese Ministry of Public Security (MPS) committed this week to work together to combat the flow of illicit fentanyl and other opioids into Canada, the RCMP said in a release.
RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson and MPS Vice-Minister Chen Zhimin met in Ottawa following the recent signing by the Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the two countries to enhance cooperation on combatting crime.
“Fentanyl and other opioids pose a grave threat to the safety of Canadian communities,” said Paulson.
This week’s meeting was “an important step forward and highlights the commitment between our two organizations to enhance operational collaboration, identify key areas of concern, and work towards a coordinated approach to combat fentanyl trafficking,” he added.
News of the collaboration was welcomed by provincial officials in BC.
In a joint statement, Mike Morris, minister of public safety, along with health minister Terry Lake, said they were “pleased to report today the RCMP and Chinese Ministry of Public Safety announced their commitment to work together to co-ordinate enforcement efforts against illegal fentanyl trafficking into Canada.”
The agreement is a “critical step that aligns with B.C.’s advocacy in our fight against the overdose crisis, and we welcome this swift action,” they added. “Provincial and local enforcement will remain critical, but this is a step forward.”
Discussions to formalize joint investigations between China and Canada will begin next week.