Mexico Moves Toward Major Rollback of Marijuana Prohibition

Mexico’s next interior minister plans to submit a bill to create a medical marijuana industry and allow recreational use, the Congress website showed on Tuesday, in what would be a big step by the incoming government to shake up the country’s drug war.

Senator Olga Sanchez, Mexican President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s choice for interior minister, told Reuters the bill would be presented this week in Congress.

If the bill passes, Mexico would join Canada, Uruguay and a host of U.S. states that permit recreational use of the drug and allow its commercialization. It would be one of the most populous countries to roll back prohibition.

Mexico, which banned marijuana in the early 20th century, is still a major supplier of illicit weed to the United States. It has been racked by a decade of conflict between cartels over supply routes for heroin, cocaine and synthetic drugs to its northern neighbor.

Lopez Obrador, a veteran leftist who takes office Dec. 1, has promised major changes to Mexico’s approach to the war on drugs, suggesting a negotiated peace and amnesty for some of the very people currently targeted by security forces.

In the 26-page bill posted on the Congress website, Sanchez wrote that Mexico’s cannabis prohibition has contributed to crime and violence, adding that in the 12 years since Mexico launched a war on cartels, 235,000 people have been killed.

“The policy of prohibition arises from the false assumption that the problem of drugs should be tackled from a penal focus,” wrote Sanchez, a former Supreme Court magistrate.

“The objective can’t be to eradicate the consumption of a substance that’s as prevalent as cannabis is,” she added.

Although the coalition led by the president-elect’s National Regeneration Movement (MORENA) party has a majority in both houses, it includes a conservative party that has in the past opposed some socially progressive policies, meaning the bill may face hurdles.

“It will be presented on Thursday, without fail,” Sanchez said. Legislation in Mexico’s two-house Congress often moves slowly, and after being submitted, the bill would have to pass committees before reaching a vote.

NEW INDUSTRY

The bill would permit companies to grow and commercialize marijuana. Individuals would also be allowed to cultivate plants for private use, as long as they register in an anonymous government listing and produce no more than 480 grams (1 lb) of marijuana per year.

Smoking pot in public places would also be permitted.

Cannabis producers would be banned from hiring minors or selling the drug to them.

Mexico’s Supreme Court last week ruled that an absolute ban on recreational use of marijuana was unconstitutional, effectively leaving it to lawmakers to regulate consumption of the drug.

Support for legalization has strengthened in Mexico in recent years as violence soars. Former Mexican President Vicente Fox has been an outspoken advocate for legalization, joining the board of Khiron Life Sciences Corp in July.

Bill Gates lauds futuristic toilets in China

Khiron is one of several listed Canadian weed companies. Stocks in the sector have been on a tear over the past year in anticipation of strong demand following last month’s legalization.

Fox also joined the board of Hightimes Holding Corp, which owns the marijuana enthusiast magazine High Times, earlier this year.

Since 2006, Mexico has used military might to fight drug gangs, which have splintered into smaller groups battling over trafficking routes and territory.

The country saw more than 31,000 murders last year, the highest total since modern records began, according to government data.

Source: Reuters

Mexico Moves Toward Major Rollback of Marijuana Prohibition

Mexico’s next interior minister plans to submit a bill to create a medical marijuana industry and allow recreational use, the Congress website showed on Tuesday, in what would be a big step by the incoming government to shake up the country’s drug war.

Senator Olga Sanchez, Mexican President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s choice for interior minister, told Reuters the bill would be presented this week in Congress.

If the bill passes, Mexico would join Canada, Uruguay and a host of U.S. states that permit recreational use of the drug and allow its commercialization. It would be one of the most populous countries to roll back prohibition.

Mexico, which banned marijuana in the early 20th century, is still a major supplier of illicit weed to the United States. It has been racked by a decade of conflict between cartels over supply routes for heroin, cocaine and synthetic drugs to its northern neighbor.

Negotiated Peace & amnesty

Lopez Obrador, a veteran leftist who takes office Dec. 1, has promised major changes to Mexico’s approach to the war on drugs, suggesting a negotiated peace and amnesty for some of the very people currently targeted by security forces.

In the 26-page bill posted on the Congress website, Sanchez wrote that Mexico’s cannabis prohibition has contributed to crime and violence, adding that in the 12 years since Mexico launched a war on cartels, 235,000 people have been killed.

“The policy of prohibition arises from the false assumption that the problem of drugs should be tackled from a penal focus,” wrote Sanchez, a former Supreme Court magistrate.

“The objective can’t be to eradicate the consumption of a substance that’s as prevalent as cannabis is,” she added.

Although the coalition led by the president-elect’s National Regeneration Movement (MORENA) party has a majority in both houses, it includes a conservative party that has in the past opposed some socially progressive policies, meaning the bill may face hurdles.

“It will be presented on Thursday, without fail,” Sanchez said. Legislation in Mexico’s two-house Congress often moves slowly, and after being submitted, the bill would have to pass committees before reaching a vote.

New Industry

The bill would permit companies to grow and commercialize marijuana. Individuals would also be allowed to cultivate plants for private use, as long as they register in an anonymous government listing and produce no more than 480 grams (1 pound) of marijuana per year.

Smoking pot in public places would also be permitted.

Cannabis producers would be banned from hiring minors or selling the drug to them.

Mexico’s Supreme Court last week ruled that an absolute ban on recreational use of marijuana was unconstitutional, effectively leaving it to lawmakers to regulate consumption of the drug.

Support for legalization has strengthened in Mexico in recent years as violence soars. Former Mexican President Vicente Fox has been an outspoken advocate for legalization, joining the board of Khiron Life Sciences Corp. in July.

Khiron is one of several listed Canadian weed companies.

Stocks in the sector have been on a tear over the past year in anticipation of strong demand following last month’s legalization.

Fox also joined the board of Hightimes Holding Corp., which owns the marijuana enthusiast magazine High Times, earlier this year.

Since 2006, Mexico has used military might to fight drug gangs, which have splintered into smaller groups battling over trafficking routes and territory.

The country saw more than 31,000 homicides last year, the highest total since modern record-keeping began, according to government data.

Source: Voa

America’s Neighbor May Soon Legalize Marijuana. No, the Other One

This has proven to be an incredible year for the marijuana industry. Long viewed as a taboo topic, we’ve witnessed no shortage of “marijuana firsts” in 2018. So far this year:

  • Vermont became the first state to legalize recreational cannabis entirely through the legislative process.
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved its very first cannabis-derived drug, not including synthetic drugs.
  • At least five pot stocks are in the process of uplisting from the over-the-counter exchange to more reputable U.S. exchanges, such as the NYSE and Nasdaq.
  • Tilray became the first major Canadian grower to go the initial public offering route via a major exchange (the Nasdaq).
  • A record percentage of Americans (66%) want to see marijuana legalized, per Gallup.
  • Canada legalized recreational marijuana following nine decades of prohibition.
Clear jars filled with trimmed cannabis on a counter.

IMAGE SOURCE: GETTY IMAGES.

Is The Cannabis Industry’s Big Year About to Get Even Better?

It’s this last game changer that’s really turned heads. Although Canada has dealt with initial supply shortages and licensing delays from Health Canada, the industry should be capable of $5 billion or more in added annual sales once fully up to speed.

Canada’s legalization has also placed additional pressure on the U.S. federal government to consider changing its tune on pot. Despite 30 states having passed broad-sweeping medical cannabis laws, and nine of those states also allowing the use of recreational weed, the federal government has kept marijuana firmly as a Schedule I drug. This means it’s entirely illegal, prone to abuse, and has no recognized medical benefits.

Now, the U.S. federal government may face a new source of legalization pressure from its other neighbor, Mexico.

A judge's gavel next to dried cannabis buds.

IMAGE SOURCE: GETTY IMAGES.

America’s Other Neighbor May Soon Legalize Recreational Pot

As reported by the Associated Press earlier this week, Mexico’s Supreme Court made two more rulings that the country’s prohibition of recreational marijuana is unconstitutional. According to the AP, “adults have a fundamental right to personal development which lets them decide their recreational activities without interference from the state.”

Now, to be crystal clear, it doesn’t mean recreational marijuana is legal in Mexico. However, it does set the groundwork to fight its illegality in Mexican federal courts, and goes as far as to suggest that a blanket ban isn’t legal. You see, under Mexican law, if the Supreme Court reaches five similar decisions on an issue — and since 2015, it’s ruled five times that the imposition of a ban on recreational marijuana is unconstitutional — the standard set by the court is applied throughout the entire country.

What’s next, you ask? While it’s impossible to know with any certainty, the court’s ruling may encourage lawmakers to change the country’s existing law to allow for legal recreational weed consumption and/or sale. President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s staff has suggested that legalization isn’t out of the question. If you recall, Mexico legalized medical cannabis during the summer of 2017, so advancing an adult-use pot bill wouldn’t be that much of a stretch. 

Were Canada to legalize adult-use weed, it’d certainly encourage many of the larger Canadian players to consider looking at Mexico as a region for expansion. The country’s cartel activity does complicate things a bit, but it would nevertheless represent an enlarging of the market potential for North American cannabis.

A tipped-over jar of cannabis lying atop a small pile of cash bills.
GETTY IMAGES

These Pot Stocks Should be Very Excited About This Development

Since we don’t know what’ll happen in Mexico with any certainty, trying to figure its potential market size is a bit of a crapshoot. Still, there are two marijuana stocks that could see immediate benefits if Mexico went green.

Long story short, don’t overlook Mexico in the months to come.

Here’s The Marijuana Stock You’ve Been Waiting For
A little-known Canadian company just unlocked what some experts think could be the key to profiting off the coming marijuana boom.

And make no mistake – it is coming.

Cannabis legalization is sweeping over North America – 9 states plus Washington, D.C., have all legalized recreational marijuana over the last few years, and full legalization came to Canada in October 2018.

And one under-the-radar Canadian company is poised to explode from this coming marijuana revolution.

Because a game-changing deal just went down between the Ontario government and this powerhouse company…and you need to hear this story today if you have even considered investing in pot stocks.

Mexico Just Legalized Cannabis

On Wednesday, October 31st, Mexico’s Supreme Court handed down two decisions deeming the country’s recreational marijuana prohibition laws to be unconstitutional. The Supreme Court “found that adults have a fundamental right to personal development which lets them decide their recreational activities without interference from the state,” according to the Associated Press.

In addition to three similar rulings between 2015 and 2017, the court has now reached this conclusion on recreational marijuana use for the fifth time. The number is significant, because when the Supreme Court reaches similar rulings in five separate cases, Mexico’s legal system applies the precedent across all of its courts.

“With the existence of five precedents in the same vein on the subject, the judgment will be mandatory for all courts in the country,” the Supreme Court noted in its latest conclusions.

So does that make recreational marijuana legal in Mexico? Not quite. The Supreme Court’s new standard mandates that the courts must allow recreational use, possession and growing — not commercialization or sales — but the laws regulating marijuana use haven’t changed, at least for now; individuals can still be arrested and face charges or fines, but they could then challenge the constitutionality of their case within the judicial system.

However, legalization advocates like Mexico United Against Crime (MUAC), which opposes prohibitionist drug policies, believe that by setting a new precedent, the Supreme Court has “open[ed] the door to regulation of cannabis.”

“The Supreme Court has done its job…. The responsibility for issuing the corresponding regulation falls on congress,” Lisa Sanchez, the group’s director general, said in a statement.

With the courts now required to treat adult recreational use as a right, not a crime, it makes more sense than ever for Mexico’s government to legalize and regulate cannabis. With billions of dollars being funneled into dangerous drug cartels, eliminating the black market for marijuana would help “improve conditions of justice and peace in the country,” Sanchez said.

According to Reuters, there have been murmurs that President-elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s administration supports legalization, and the Supreme Court’s ruling could make it a bigger priority. If Mexico were to legalize recreational marijuana, it would be only the third country, after Uruguay and Canada, to do so.

Source: Rolling Stone

Mexico Supreme Court Rules Ban on Marijuana Unconstitutional

Announcing it had found in favour of two legal challenges filed against prohibition of recreational marijuana use, Mexico’s top court crossed the threshold needed to create jurisprudence: five similar rulings on the matter.

That creates a precedent other Mexican courts will have to follow.

“This is a historic day,” Fernando Belaunzaran, an advocate of drug reform and member of the opposition leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), said.

The Supreme Court made its first ruling to allow a group of people to grow marijuana for personal use in November 2015.

In a statement, the court said the ruling did not create an absolute right to use marijuana and that consumption of certain substances could still be subject to regulation.

“But the effects caused by marijuana do not justify an absolute prohibition on its consumption,” it said.

The court ordered federal health regulator COFEPRIS to authorize people seeking the right to use marijuana to do so personally, “albeit without allowing them to market it, or use other narcotics or psychotropic drugs.”

Congress would now have to act to regulate the use of marijuana in Mexico, Belaunzaran said.

Officials in the incoming government of President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador have indicated they could take steps to legalize marijuana quickly as part of a broader strategy to fight poverty and crime.

Source: Global News

Up ↑