Skip to content

United Nations Acts on Shaheen’s Request to Regulate Precursor Chemicals of Fentanyl

**Shaheen Urged the International Narcotics Control Board and the European Commission to Support the UN Designating Precursor Chemicals of Fentanyl as Table 1 Substances**

(Washington, DC) — In response to U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen’s (D-NH) requests, the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs today voted to regulate precursor chemicals of fentanyl by designating them as Table 1 substances under the UN Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances. UN members states will now begin to bring these chemicals under their regulatory control system. Last October, Shaheen and a group of senators wrote to the International Narcotics Control Board, which oversees implementation of the UN drug conventions, urging them to support this action. In February, Shaheen sent a letter to the European Commission asking them to support the action before the Commission on Narcotic Drugs. Regulation of these chemicals will help curb the manufacturing and trafficking of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid. Fentanyl, which is often mixed with heroin, has contributed to three-fourths of the opioid deaths in New Hampshire, which has the highest synthetic opioid death rate in the country.

“Today’s action by the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs will save lives in the United States,” said Shaheen. “Fentanyl is now the main driver of the opioid crisis in New Hampshire and it’s killing hundreds of Granite Staters every year. UN member states will now join the United States in regulating the dangerous precursor chemicals of Fentanyl, helping to keep them out of the hands of illicit manufacturers and reduce the flow of this lethal synthetic opioid into the United States. This is an important step in our efforts to combat the opioid epidemic that has devastated New Hampshire and communities across the country.”

N-Phenethyl-4-piperidinone (NPP) and 4-anilino-N-phenethyl-4-piperidine (ANPP) are the two precursor chemicals that will now be regulated. By classifying NPP and ANPP as Table 1 substances, the UN sets the international standards for the production, manufacture, trade, distribution and stocks of the controlled drugs so that they are used exclusively for medical and scientific purposes. The production and distribution of controlled substances must be licensed and supervised, and governments are directed to provide estimates to INCB on the purpose, on the quantities of drugs required, manufactured and utilized and the quantities seized by police and customs officers.