Medical Cannabis Approved For Production And Sales In Greece
The sunny, Mediterranean country holds great promise for the cultivation and extraction of cannabis products bound for the rest of Europe.
Move over Portugal! According to local English-language media, The Greek Reporter, the Greek Parliament finally approved a bill to legalize the cultivation and sale of medical marijuana in Greece (on Friday). The bill passed 158 to 33 with opposition only from the Communist Party of Greece, the Greek Solution and the MeRA 25 Party (supported by Greek superstar economist Yanis Varoufakis).
The bill, called the “Production, extraction and distribution of final products of pharmaceutical cannabis of the species Cannabis Sativa L (with over 0.2% THC)” was submitted initially by the Greek department of Development and Investment and has ticked along all spring.
What Happens Now?
For those who might be confused (since Greece initially passed a medical marijuana bill in 2018 to begin to allow medical cultivation), this new bill is intended to expedite the process for obtaining licenses for medical marijuana production and facilitate investment in the domestic industry. Indeed, government spokespersons have commented already that the intent of the law is to create an integrated framework for the development of the cannabis industry in Greece – specifically for the purpose of job creation and by encouraging investment in the country.
However, beyond this, there are still outlying issues that need to be fixed. Specifically, as of Friday, there were already domestic critics who were calling foul – namely that the process of reform has been “incomplete.” Namely, the Syriza Party is going to attempt to amend the bill to propose that the application process for a license should also enable producers to sell to domestic patients and further, provide products in both raw flower and extract form.
The Greek Domino and Its Impact on Europe
With Greece now officially moving forward with cannabis as a tool of economic development, it is unlikely that other European governments will sit on the sidelines for long. Indeed, even France is moving forward on a CBD cultivation bill.
The days of Prohibition are indeed coming to an end in Europe. And it is also very likely that, just like Greece, a formerly verboten plant will become instead a tool of governments to make lives better.
If there is a cannabis theme of the 2020’s it is likely to be this, particularly in Europe. Cannabis is being reintegrated into the continent. And the economies of its countries, as well as its peoples, will never be the same again.
Be sure to book your tickets now to the International Cannabis Business Conference when it returns to Europe in August.