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Authorities in Thailand Pass Legislation for Medical Marijuana

See transcript of the above video below:

This is a follow up video to a previous video we did where we were discussing the possibility of the passage of legislation here in the Kingdom pertaining to medical and medicinal marijuana.

In a recent article from the Bangkok Post, the headline is “Medical Cannabis, Kratom Bill Passed by NLA”, this was dated 25 December, 2018. Quoting directly, "The National Legislative Assembly, NLA ,on Tuesday passed the second and third readings of an amendment to the Narcotics Law legalizing the production, import, export, possession or use of Cannabis and Kratom products for medical purposes. The bill received 166 votes in favor with 13 abstentions." Quoting directly further, "Consumers will be able to carry specified amounts necessary for treatment of illness, if they have prescriptions or certificates from professionals in medicine, dentistry, Thai traditional alternative medicine or indigenous medicine. Possession will be subject to conditions approved by the Narcotics Control Committee. The amendment will become law only when it is published in the Government Gazette.” So those who are interested in this I urge you to check out this article. Again, “Medical Cannabis, Kratom Bill passed by NLA”, Bangkok Post 25th December, 2018. 

A couple of things to keep in mind: I think that this is going to be very interesting with respect to Thailand and with respect to that particular industry.  We will see how this impacts the pharmaceutical and medical industry here in the Kingdom. The other thing to take away from this is again this is not a recreational use Bill.  This doesn't have anything to do with that. We are still kind of going over the draft. We are going over now the past bill and we're waiting to see how this comes out in the actual Government Gazette so we can see the finalized legalized language.

That being said, it looks to me like certain aspects of this are going to liberalize things with respect to marijuana probably rather considerably compared to times past but this should not be viewed as something that is basically allowing for recreational use and I think Thailand and the authorities associated with this Act and passage thereof are going to be very zealous in their enforcement activities and making sure that those who are utilizing marijuana and cannabis are doing so in a way which comports with the Act and I think that that Act is going to be interpreted rather conservatively, at least at the outset, by enforcement Officials. 

So how this all plays out as a practical matter remains to be seen. We will keep you updated on this channel as things progress with respect to this issue. But it is interesting and it is kind of a major turning point on this topic especially in the overall context of Asia as I believe Thailand is the first jurisdiction in Asia to legalize marijuana in any way, medicinal or otherwise. So in a lot of ways this may prove to be sort of a cutting-edge aspect of the Thai Legal System and it may be something to keep an eye on for those who are interested in this issue in other jurisdictions to see how it plays out in Thailand as there may be certain similarities to the way this could play out in other places here in Asia.