Thailand has not only decriminalised marijuana, they are actively encouraging its cultivation!
Here is what you need to know…
Thailand Decriminalises + Encourages Marijuana Cultivation!
On 9 June 2022, Thailand removed marijuana (ganja) from its banned narcotics list, effectively becoming the first country in Asia to decriminalise it.
People in Thailand are now allowed to grow cannabis plants and sell them. In fact, the government is even giving away one million cannabis seedlings to encourage its cultivation!
This is part of the government’s plan to promote medical marijuana, as part of its medical tourism industry. Thai Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said recently :
We should know how to use cannabis. If we have the right awareness, cannabis is like gold, something valuable, and should be promoted.
Recreational Marijuana Use Is Still Banned In Thailand
Officially, recreational use is still banned, with cannabis approved only for medical use (since 2018), but the government is unlikely to prosecute anyone smoking marijuana privately.
After all, every household that registers with the government is allowed to cultivate up to six cannabis plants at home!
People smoking marijuana in public though could be arrested, and potentially invite a 3-month jail sentence and a 25,000 baht ($725 / RM3.2K) fine under the Public Health Act.
Thai Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said :
We still have regulations under the law that control the consumption, smoking or use of cannabis products in non-productive ways.
We [have always] emphasized using cannabis extractions and raw materials for medical purposes and for health.
There has never once been a moment that we would think about advocating people to use cannabis in terms of recreation — or use it in a way that it could irritate others.
On the other hand, the Thai government will also release about 4,000 people who were convicted of cannabis-related offences and imprisoned.
That suggests that the Thai government is working to relax rules on recreational use, with a wider law on cannabis trade and control being considered.
The current rules also allow people to smoke marijuana in private, as long as they declare it is for medical purposes.
It is also allowed to be used in food and drinks, or other products, as long as they contain less than 0.2% of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – the chemical compound that gives people the “high” feeling.
That said, it is quite impossible for the authorities to monitor and regulate how much THC goes into food and drinks… so the line they drew in the sand is already blurred.
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