After a long series of delays, it looks like Mexico could join Canada, parts of the U.S., and other countries in legalizing recreational-use cannabis.
In 2018, Mexico’s supreme court ruled that the illegality of cannabis cultivation and possession in the country was unconstitutional. Since then, legislators within the country have been in a battle to decide on the legal status of the plant, and what a legal cannabis market may look like.
Mexico’s proposed legalization effort seeks to create a regulated cannabis market that would enable adults aged 18 and above to buy and possess up to 28 grams of marijuana, as well as cultivating up to four plants for personal use.
There is also the potential for the marijuana legislation to be voted on in the Senate within this coming week too.
Speaking on prohibition, Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has previously stated that the black market needs to be eliminated, and that prohibition doesn’t achieve that goal.
“In the matter of narcotic drugs, the prohibitionist strategy is already unsustainable, not only because of the violence generated by its poor results in terms of public health,” Obrador stated.
“The only real possibility of reducing the levels of drug consumption is to lift the ban on those that are currently illegal,” Obrador’s statement mentioned, “and redirect the resources currently destined to combat their transfer and apply them in programs — massive, but personalized — of reinsertion and detoxification.”
However, the upcoming proposed legislation has come under fire from cannabis experts, such as Cannabis entrepreneur Jorge Rubio, an advisor in the Mexican market who says the bill does not focus on establishing an industry.
“They are more focused on the regulation of personal use than the medicinal and industrial potential,” he said. “Few people in Mexico really understand the real opportunities and challenges of the cannabis industry.”