Germany moves to legalize – likely the first domino to fall
The German Government is taking steps to legalize recreational cannabis, but not without doing its’ due diligence. At present, the coalition government is still vowing to legalize recreational cannabis and believes it will become one of the largest markets in the world. Although the legislation for recreational cannabis is likely one or two years away, officials have recently concluded consultations and five public hearings with health experts. While it is not yet time to start looking into German Cannabis IPOs or making plans for German canna-tourism, the momentum is promising.
As an economic leader in Europe, the move to legalize may prove to be the first of many dominoes to fall across the European Union. With a focus on eliminating the illicit cannabis market, the government aims to establish quality control over the industry, helping to prevent contaminated product (unsafe levels of dangerous chemicals/pesticides) from reaching minors and the general population. The greater issue comes with providing access to legal cannabis across the country, a concern that is bringing delivery services into the fray, as remote regions are less likely to enjoy as many retail options as larger cities.
Legalizing cannabis sale and trade would put Germany in an unenviable position: in violation of UN 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. In December of 2020, the UN Commission for Narcotic Drugs (CND) reclassified cannabis and cannabis resins as Schedule I, having previously Schedule IV – the same as heroin and fentanyl. This reclassification recognizes the therapeutic value and medical utility of cannabis, making it far less strictly controlled. While Uruguay and Canada, both members of the UN, have managed to avoid fallout for their support of legalized cannabis, it is possible that legalization in Germany would prompt further review and reform of the convention.
A move to legalize in Germany is a potential tipping point for the cannabis conversation on a global scale. When an influential country in the European Union, and global economic power, recognizes the potential of cannabis, the world listens.