Thailand plans to require permits for cannabis use

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BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand is set to reinstate cannabis on the national list of narcotics and issue permits only to those who grow it for medical or research purposes, Public Health Minister Somsak said Thepsutin on social networks Thursday.

This announcement follows a policy reversal by Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin, who had promised to re-criminalize cannabis, decriminalized in 2022, by the end of the year.

Recreational use will be banned under upcoming legislation, Somsak Thepsutin said, and those wishing to cultivate, export or possess cannabis for medical and research purposes will need to obtain a permit, details of which are still being finalized. development course.

“The permit system should not impose an unreasonable burden on the public,” he said in a Facebook post, adding that there would be a grace period to allow the public to adjust.

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Pro-cannabis groups say the move risks hurting business confidence as thousands of cafes and dispensaries popped up after legalization, an industry expected to be worth up to $1.2 billion by 2025.

Marijuana is commonly used in traditional Thai medicine to relieve pain and fatigue.

The Southeast Asian country first legalized cannabis for research and medical use in 2018 before removing it from the national list of narcotics, effectively authorizing the cultivation, sale and consumption of the drug. plant.

(Reporting Panarat Thepgumpanat and Chayut Setboonsarng, French version Leo Marchandon, editing by Kate Entringer)


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