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420 with CNW — Germany May Initiate Legal Adult-Use Cannabis Sales Via Regulations, Bypassing Standalone Law

Germany is progressing with the next stage of cannabis legalization by initiating a pilot program for commercial sales using an administrative process instead of waiting for legislators to pass a separate measure as initially anticipated. It has long been expected that lawmakers would introduce and approve additional sales bills to complete the second phase of legalization. However, the government is opting for a rulemaking approach, potentially expediting the implementation process.

Cannabis legalization was set in motion under a measure led by Germany’s Ministry of Health, which went into force in April 2024. This allows adults to use and grow marijuana and join clubs for access to the plant, with cooperative launches expected in July. Nonetheless, there is currently no established commercial sales road map.

According to a report from Tagesspiegel Background, the existing law provides regulatory flexibility to build upon the original reform. Germany’s Ministry of Agriculture has the authority to create regulations for a commercial pilot initiative, enabling adults to purchase marijuana in specific areas without requiring further legislative action.

However, this approach also raises the possibility of easier reversal by a future government. Nevertheless, in the short-term, expediting the sales process is possible. According to reports, representatives from the Agricultural Ministry have sent out a letter asking for comments by May 10, 2024, on possible rules on retail sales under a pilot initiative.

Karl Lauterbach, Germany’s health minister, who has been leading the government’s marijuana legalization efforts, mentioned to Bundestag members last year that the commercial sales program is under consideration. With legalization already in place, there is growing pressure to accelerate this process.

Previously, the Bundesrat representing different states attempted to block the legalization proposal enacted last September, but this effort failed. Bundesrat members later worked with Lauterbach and other government officials to find a compromise.

The first legalization framework was accepted by Germany’s cabinet in late 2022, but to uphold its international responsibilities, the government sought approval from the European Union. Hearings were held in 2022 to provide legislation that would remove the prohibition.

In November 2023, government representatives from various countries, including the United States, convened in Germany to discuss international cannabis policy as the host country pursued legalization.

A delegation of German legislators visited the United States in 2022, touring marijuana businesses in California to inform Germany’s approach to legalization. The visit followed a groundbreaking meeting between Netherlands, Germany, Malta and Luxembourg officials to discuss plans and obstacles related to recreational cannabis legalization.

The coalition government leaders revealed some details of their agreement to legalize cannabis in 2021 and declared that they had come to an agreement to eliminate prohibition.

Meanwhile, the drug control arm of the United Nations recently restated its stance that legalizing cannabis for nonscientific or nonmedical purposes violates international treaties. However, it acknowledged Germany’s government for scaling back its marijuana plans before the upcoming vote.

This expedited way to get adult-use cannabis sales underway is likely to be applauded by the wider marijuana industry, including major companies such as TerrAscend Corp. (TSX: TSND) (OTCQX: TSNDF), because as it would facilitate access to recreational marijuana for Germans who are interested in consuming the substance.

About CNW420

CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of an article each business day at 4:20 p.m. Eastern – a tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. The concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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