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Costa Rica’s New Law Contemplates the Role of Hemp in Modernizing Agriculture
Costa Rica has legalized the cultivation and processing of Hemp under a recently signed law that attributes supervision to the agriculture and health agencies. The new law also establishes a legal framework for marijuana in medicinal and therapeutic purposes.
Released in mid-September, the legislation puts the agriculture, production, industrialization and marketing of Cannabis under the responsibility of the country’s Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, while allowing for research and academic study that will be overseen by the Ministry of Health.
Countries Around the World Make Moves to Decriminalize Cannabis
In late 2019, a ruling by Italy’s highest court struck down the prohibition against growing marijuana at home, ending a long legal dispute over that issue.
The court ruled that “at home, small-scale cultivation activities are to be considered excluded from the application of the penal code,” according to the New York Times.
The polemic of cultivation and consumption of cannabis in Costa Rica
From The Costa Rica News (TCRN) we have emphasized all relevant information that has come to light regarding the issue of “Cannabis in Costa Rica” since it continues to be a conflictive debate in this Central American country.
Let´s recall that in August 2018, the Costa Rican Supreme Court determined that a person is allowed to grow cannabis in their home for personal consumption and not trafficking and the State will not consider it as a danger to public health.
With the introduction of new oil-only cannabis Bill, could Costa Rica finally be on its way to legalization?
Progress has most certainly been made with regard to cannabis regulation in Costa Rica — however, to say the pace of change has been slow is something of an understatement.
Report: Legal Approaches to Decriminalize Cannabis in 16 Different Countries
This report, prepared by the foreign law specialists and analysts of the Law Library of Congress, provides a review of laws adopted in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, the Czech Republic, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, and Uruguay with regard to decriminalization of narcotics, and touches specifically on cannabis and legalization.
People in Latin America Are Starting to Turn Against Outlawing Marijuana
Attitudes in Latin America are shifting away from supporting prohibitionist policies, but they are far from consensus and the policy implications are unclear.
Sentiments in Latin America in favor of outlawing marijuana appear to be undergoing shifts in some countries, according to researchers in Chile and the UK.
A study published the International Journal of Drug Policy found that, in some parts of the region, more than 40% of respondents supported legalizing the drug, while in other, more conservative areas, support remained minimal.
Bill Introduced to Legalize Medical Marijuana and Hemp in Costa Rica
All around the world, different countries are considering the question of whether to legalize marijuana for medical purposes, as well as the growing of hemp for industrial uses. There have been any number of reports and studies to gain support for this movement showing that medical cannabis provides relief from a vast array of illness. Hemp is a product with an astonishing number of uses, as well as actually contributing to the safeguard of rain forests and replenishing of the soil.
Costa Rica Sees Growth in Hydroponic Marijuana Production
Costa Rica has seen an increase in cannabis growing operations that use more sophisticated cultivation methods, a possible result of increased demand fueled by foreign visitors looking for higher-quality marijuana.
According to a report by La Nación, in the last 13 years Costa Rican authorities have dismantled 41 laboratories where marijuana was being cultivated with hydroponics.
The Future of Medical Marijuana in Latin America
It’s a beautiful place for marijuana.
Costa Rica has an established history as a haven for liberal ideas, happy people, and gorgeous scenery. The country is one of the most environmentally friendly places in the world with 25% of the nation’s acreage protected from industrial development of any kind. It also disbanded its armed forced is the 1940’s, has fabulous healthcare, and a great education system.
Costa Rica Will Host Major Medical Marijuana Conference
The Council for the International Promotion of Costa Rica Medicine will host the Latin America Medical Cannabis Conference in Costa Rican on July 27-29th as part of ExpoMed series.
PROMED is a private not-for-profit organization, which coordinates the quality control and international promotion efforts of the medical tourism industry. Its goal is to ensure the quality of services provided by the private health industry in Costa Rica as the country becomes a major center for global medicine and medical tourism.
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Costa Rica Moves Toward Medical Cannabis Legalization
In recent posts, we’ve explored legislative developments regarding cannabis in Argentina, Colombia and Mexico. Today, we turn our attention to Central America, and specifically Costa Rica, where a bill that seeks to legalize medical cannabis is winding its way through the legislative process.
The bill was originally introduced by Zoila Rosa Volio in March of last year, but has since stalled. Based on comments by Volio, bureaucratic ineptitude is mostly to blame (“the MAG [Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock] is like the Bermuda Triangle”), though opposition from some deputies on religious grounds appears to have also played a role (“I do not believe that a cannabis plant is a sin … because it is God’s work”).
However, the economic hardships brought on by the coronavirus pandemic have provided new impetus for the bill. As Volio points out, “It would be a project to generate employment. There are many companies that are bankrupt that could start producing these types of products. They could come together and plant hemp and establish a safe market where their product can be placed.”
In addition to the possible boost to its agricultural sector, Volio suggests Costa Rica could become a cannabis R&D cluster. Given Costa Rica’s established role as an exporter of medical devices and medical tourism destination, this aspiration is far from fanciful.
In May, President Carlos Alvarado announced his government’s support for the bill, specifically citing it as “one of the initiatives to reactivate the economy after the crisis caused by [COVID-19].” Last week, the Legislative Assembly Environment Committee approved an amended text.
With regard to hemp, the bill would authorize “the cultivation, production, industrialization, and marketing of non-psychoactive hemp [below 1% THC] or cannabis and its products or by-products, for food and industrial purposes.” Producers would need to register with the MAG, while those carrying out research and processing would need to register with the Health Ministry. The bill would also call for the executive branch to issue necessary regulations.
In addition, the bill would authorize “the use and exploitation in the national territory of psychoactive cannabis [1% THC or more] for the medical and therapeutic purposes,” covering both cannabis cultivation and processing. Cultivation activities involving psychoactive cannabis would require a license issued by the MAG, while research and processing activities would need to be licensed by the Health Ministry. Licenses would be available to natural and legal persons.
Developments in Costa Rica confirm that a cannabis revolution is underway across Latin America. Leading the charge are personalities like Volio, who are emerging from across the political spectrum, bringing a diversity of philosophical approaches in support of legalization initiatives. For instance, another of Volio’s recent initiatives concerns the closure of unauthorized runways, often used by drug traffickers. It is refreshing to see politicians who don’t see an inconsistency between supporting law-and-order initiatives and advocating for greater access to Hemp-CBD and medical cannabis.
Fred is a former diplomat who joined Harris Bricken after more than a decade of international legal experience, primarily in China, Vietnam, and Thailand. His wide range of experience includes starting and operating his own business in Asia, working as an in-house counsel for a Hong Kong-based multinational, as well…Costa Rica Moves Toward Medical Cannabis Legalization In recent posts, we’ve explored legislative developments regarding cannabis in Argentina, Colombia and Mexico. Today, we turn our attention ]]>