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Slovenia Voters Overwhelmingly Approve Medical Cannabis Referendum Measure

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(*Editorial note – this article was updated from its original version to reflect updated voting results*)

Voters in Slovenia appear to have overwhelmingly voted in favor of a medical cannabis referendum measure today. Today’s cannabis vote in Slovenia occurred alongside the wider 2024 European election.

With 92.84% of the votes counted, 65.41% answered ‘for’ when asked the question (translated from Slovenian to English), “Should the Republic of Slovenia allow the cultivation and processing of cannabis for medical purposes on its territory?”

The medical cannabis referendum question was one of two cannabis questions placed before Slovenia’s voters. The second one asked the question, “Should the Republic of Slovenia allow the cultivation and possession of cannabis for limited personal use on its territory?”

The personal adult cultivation and use question was passing by a slim margin with 92.74% of the vote counted, with 50.93% of voters answering ‘for’ and 49.07% answering ‘against’ the adult-use measure. With such a razor-thin margin, the vote is still too close to call. Local cannabis advocates are celebrating the results of today’s vote in Slovenia.

“People are clearly not satisfied with this drug policy. However, problems are not solved by the same people who created the problems. If only half of the voters are in favor of greater use of cannabis, it will be a big eavesdrop on the counter-propaganda financed by the Ministry of Health and doctors,” stated Božidar Radišič according to domestic reporting by Delo (translated from Slovenian to English).

Both cannabis referendum measures are consultation referendums and are not binding. What happens after all of the votes are counted and recorded is up to lawmakers in Slovenia.

Limited medical cannabis activity is currently permitted in Slovenia, although the nation’s program is more restrictive compared to other European nations, with countries such as Germany having incorporated a wider list of qualifying conditions, regulated domestic production, and regulated commerce.

Slovenia already serves as an international research and development hub for several large industries, and the favorable medical cannabis production and processing vote combined with an already existing infrastructure makes Slovenia well-positioned to do the same for the emerging international cannabis industry.

“Thanks to researchers and laboratories, Slovenia could become an intellectual superpower in the field of cannabis according to Alex Rogers,” Delo also stated in its original coverage.

Today’s vote in Slovenia comes on the heels of other successful recent cannabis policy modernization efforts in other nations. Last month, South Africa’s President signed a measure that legalized private cannabis cultivation, possession, and use by adults.

On April 1st, 2024 the first provisions of Germany’s adult-use cannabis legalization measure went into effect. Adults in Germany can now cultivate up to three plants in their private residences. Social cannabis clubs are expected to launch in July in Germany, and regional adult-use cannabis commerce pilot trials are expected to begin by the end of the year.

Cannabis is also currently legal for adult use in Uruguay, Canada, Malta, Luxembourg, and in two dozen states in the U.S. Additionally, adult-use cannabis commerce pilot trials are underway in several jurisdictions in the Netherlands and Switzerland.


Update: The medical cannabis production measure was officially approved after receiving 66.66% ‘for’ votes and the adult-use measure was also officially approved after receiving 51.53% ‘for’ votes. Voting turnout was roughly 41.3% for both measures.