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Development Economic Environment 

Government listens to Plans for Legalization of Medical Cannabis

Since the decision to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana in Antigua and Barbuda, the Government stated that it has been approached by half dozen local, regional and international interest groups and agencies interested in development of the industry in Antigua and Barbuda.

Most recently, an expert group known as Medical Marijuana and Canex, with operations in Jamaica where medical marijuana is legal, addressed the Cabinet. They spoke to the systems required to make the legalization of medical cannabis in Antigua free of many of the pitfalls which that other Caribbean country encountered.

According to the Cabinet press briefing, “The group pointed out that 20 jobs can be created for every acre of land placed under cultivation. From planting to reaping, a crop takes about 4 to 6 months. The experts informed that different farmers are required to plant different strains of the cannabis plant; and, that expert advice on the treating of the plants is also provided to farmers. The experts pointed to Columbia, where legislation that matches the ambition of Antigua and Barbuda can be used as a good template. The group agreed that taxes from the several steps towards creating the medical products, and the sale of the products, would increase tax revenues significantly. The expert group also addressed the times when a doctor’s prescription would be required, and when no prescription is required for an adult to access the medical cannabis products; a threshold of an ingredient known as CBD—that falls below 5%–would not require a prescription.”

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