Morocco Legalizes Therapeutic Cannabis Use in Landslide Vote
Morocco became the latest African nation to legalize the use and commercialization of cannabis with a vote of 41 for and only 11 against.
Africa has increasingly become the focus of attention of companies looking to set up cannabis farming operations. Many countries, including Lesotho, Uganda, Zimbabwe, and Zambia, legalized marijuana commerce and export recently as a result.
The move also mirrors a global impetus to legalize personal and commercial cannabis farming.
The bill aims to produce a legal framework for Moroccan farmers to develop farming operations and improve their quality of life. Morocco is already one of the largest (illegal) marijuana growers and suppliers, so the law will be a welcome avenue for farmers already growing marijuana to do so legally.
Morocco’s cannabis farmers have experienced livelihood threats as a result of the devaluation of the illegal cannabis market. Morocco’s Interior Minister was quick to point out that the bill is a way to make up for that devaluation by offering farmers more opportunities to produce cannabis unhindered.
Ideally, the legalization of cannabis will increase the revenue from farming operations and protect their rights to grow a valuable cash crop for the country’s economy.
The minister also decried the efforts of global drug control operations as damaging to Morocco’s development programs. Rather than offer solutions, he claims, drug control has only stifled alternative programs that could offer economic and social solutions that are much more conducive to the country’s well-being.
In addition to taking advantage of the global rise in cannabis demand, research by Morocco’s Interior Ministry shows the legalization will have positive economic impacts both locally and on a national level.
If the trend continues, Africa is set to become one of the most prolific sources of marijuana in the world. Cannabis has the potential to present unprecedented economic opportunities in the region.