A country that should be on your global cannabis legalization radar, if it is not already, is the Czech Republic. As we previously reported, Czechia’s top drug policy expert indicated that his country would follow Germany’s lead on adult-use reform, and this last week demonstrated that to some degree.
On Wednesday ministers from Germany’s government held a press conference in which they presented a two-faceted legalization plan, with the first involving the legalization of possession, home cultivation, and noncommercial cannabis clubs. The second facet will involve the rollout of adult-use cannabis commerce pilot programs.
The following day news broke in the Czech Republic about the nation’s own plans to pass an adult-use legalization measure, which will differ from Germany in some regards. Per Expats CZ:
With the symbolic “420” celebration just a week away, cannabis smokers in Czechia may have a new reason to smile. Czechia plans to introduce a new, regulated cannabis market allowing people to consume up to 5 grams of cannabis recreationally per day, and legalize the growth and distribution of the drug.
Seznam Zprávy reports that under the government’s new plans, consumers would need to register in a database, and growers and sellers would need to pay annual fees. According to the state’s anti-drug policy coordinator Jindřich Vobořil and the Pirate Party, which is part of the current coalition, the proposal could earn the government around CZK 2 billion per year.
Consumers being required to register in a government database under the Czech Republic’s reported plan is somewhat unique for a national legalization model, however, it’s not an unheard of concept in general. For contextual purposes, consider that the adult-use cannabis pilot program operating in Basel, Switzerland right now also requires registration.
According to Expats‘ reporting, “Growing hemp on larger plots of land would cost hundreds of thousands of crowns, and an independent shop that wants to sell cannabis would need to pay a once-yearly free, starting at about CZK 50,000.”
As part of its reporting, Expats conducted an online poll regarding adult-use cannabis reform in the Czech Republic, and as of this article’s posting 92% of survey respondents answered ‘yes’ to the question, “Do you agree with the government’s plans to regulate the recreational cannabis market?”