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Governments Around World Ponder Cannabis Legislation Changes
USAgNet - 08/15/2019

Over the past several years, the cannabis industry has witnessed an immense rise in global support as numerous countries have voiced their opinions on the topic of cannabis legalization. While many still remain indifferent, notable nations such as Australia, Colombia, Germany, France, Spain, the U.K., and the U.S. have all moved to implement some form of cannabis legislation.

Predominantly, most countries are exploring the medical cannabis industry in an effort to replace traditional medicines such as opioids. On the other hand, the North American region is witnessing substantial growth in its own recreational market. Specifically, Canada moved to completely legalize adult-use cannabis in late 2018 while select U.S. states legalized recreational cannabis throughout the year as well.

Although the U.S. has not federally legalized cannabis, it has granted states the jurisdiction to independently decide whether to legalize cannabis or not. The state's representatives can propose a bill and if it passes among the state's officials, it then moves to the ballot where residents can vote on the matter. Notably, U.S. states Michigan and Illinois were among the most recent states to legalize recreational cannabis.

Additionally, the North American region is experiencing veritable acceleration in its legalization efforts as more positive data continues to flow in from clinical trials. And as a result, the data is expected to influence other international regions as they evaluate the efficacy of cannabis for their own legislative decisions. Now, the combination of the thriving North American recreational market and the growing global medical markets, the overall cannabis industry is primed to become a disruptive global industry.

Furthermore, according to data compiled by GlobalInfoResearch, global legal marijuana market was valued at USD 7.97 Billion in 2019. And by 2024, it is expected to reach $35 billion while registering a CAGR of 28% over the next five years. Pasha Brands Ltd., Canopy Growth Corporation, Aurora Cannabis Inc., Green Thumb Industries Inc, iAnthus Capital Holdings, Inc. (are some of the leading companies.

While most are still evaluating the effects of legalization, a slew of countries have already decided to decriminalize cannabis. For instance, countries such as Belgium, Mexico, Portugal, Russia, and Switzerland have all decriminalized cannabis in moderate amounts. Countries that have decriminalized cannabis typically impose a fine or a warning for offenders instead of jail time.

Moreover, nations such as Mexico and New Zealand are actively pushing to legalize cannabis entirely. In particular, Mexico's elected President has made it a top issue on his agenda to fully legalize cannabis, primarily because of the havoc unleashed on the country by the war on drugs.

On the other hand, New Zealand is moving towards legalization because of the growing support from its denizens. Sandra Murray, campaign manager for New Zealand's #makeitlegal campaign, noted that cannabis law reform is sitting at 60% approval, while 72% of people under the age 45 support legalization.

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