Following a surprise Supreme Court decision and little time to prepare, Mexico appears to have pulled off a historic move in an incredibly short amount of time. According to Marijuana Moment, the government will meet its imposed deadline to legalize recreational marijuana this month.
Although support for legal marijuana in Mexico is strong, the government never took a proactive approach to legalization. But thanks to a unique law, the Supreme Court forced Mexico’s hand.
They were put in a difficult position – establish legalization themselves or have the Supreme Court do it for them. Naturally, they chose the former and it appears they did so successfully.
Finally Perfecting a Bill
The process is not quite over yet, but Mexico is a hair away from placing the final stamp of approval on their cannabis reform plan. Initially, several different bills were submitted as parties and the public exchanged ideas. Marijuana Moment explains:
“There are numerous pieces of legalization legislation already on the table, but Sen. Ricardo Monreal of the MORENA party said his chamber is nearly done crafting a new reform bill that will be the product of weeks of public forums and open-session debates.”
Monreal says that, assuming nothing goes wrong, they will be able to keep their scheduled legalization date.
Small Changes First
Although many politicians intend to have a full-blown industry in place, the list of obligatory issues is much smaller.
The Supreme Court’s order only says the government has to federally legalize possession, consumption and cultivation of cannabis – the three things ruled unconstitutional.
Still, marijuana likely has a bright future, as many “key lawmakers” support the creation of a fully-regulated industry.
However, one of the bill’s panel discussions involved a former U.S. “drug czar,” who provided his own take on how to proceed:
“The Senate held a series of events in recent weeks meant to solicit public input on legalization proposals and hear from experts on the issue in order to inform their bill. During one panel, a former White House drug czar spoke about the need for ‘robust regulations’ in a legal cannabis market.”
Since there is no constitutional law requiring that the government begin selling a commodity, the Supreme Court cannot force Mexico’s hand. But given the circumstances, offering the drug for recreational sale makes sense.
Retail System Under Serious Consideration
Many politicians already are in the process of considering what such a system would look like. MORENA party’s Mario Delgado Carillo proposed a fully state-run cannabis retail system. His rational is that it will prevent private cannabis companies from monopolizing the industry.
However, many of his colleagues do not share that sentiment:
“Neither Monreal nor President Andrés Manuel López Obrador are in favor of having a state-controlled cannabis program, however…Carrillo later clarified that his bill was designed to reflect a personal preference. Monreal said that he’s willing to incorporate certain ideas from the lawmaker’s proposal…”
Whichever course they take, Mexico is likely to take the next step after they take care of their in initial obligations.
WeedAdvisor’s Latin American Presence
Although nothing is final, we are confident that Mexico will soon join the ranks of Canada and Uruguay with a fully regulated legal cannabis market.
When that day comes, WeedAdvisor will be there to provide critical solutions for government, producers and retailers.
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