The final regulations pertaining to the scheme were announced late last year, and since then Kiwi officials have been striving to ensure that research and development licence-holders are well equipped to take the next steps. These include applying for the likes of commercial cultivation and manufacturing licences, so that local companies are able to start production.
Just like everywhere across the globe, Covid-19 has brought chaos and multiple disruptions to New Zealand. Paul Manning, CEO of Helius Therapeutics: New Zealand’s largest medicinal cannabis company, applauds the Medicinal Cannabis Agency which despite this chaos, has delivered the Scheme’s guidance and licensing material on time.
Applications for businesses are open
The Scheme’s April 1st launch took effect rather quietly, however it is expected to have a significant impact on the many locals who are living with conditions that may be helped by the medicinal compound. Additionally, it will naturally be of great benefit to the country’s economy via exporting opportunities and the multiple industries involved which will add to the country’s GDP.
The scheme will operate via GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) standards which will ensure the quality and consistency of cannabinoid-based medicines. This serves to assure medical practitioners that they are prescribing safe and high quality products.
Lebanon legalizes medical marijuana
Lebanon, has also recently legalized cannabis cultivation aiming to set up a new legal industry producing cannabis pharmaceutical items, including wellness products, CBD oil and industrial products such as fibers for textiles.
Up until now, the plant had been widely and openly cultivated in certain parts of Lebanon, yet this was strictly illegal. In fact back in 2018, Raed Khoury, Lebanon’s former caretaker minister for economy and trade, said that the quality of Lebanese marijuana “is one of the best in the world”.
Kareem Chehayeb, an independent Lebanese journalist and researcher, pointed out that this measure will face opposition. “Though their key allies supported the draft law, #Hezbollah were not the only party to oppose this,” Chehayeb tweeted. Hilal Khashan, a professor of political studies and public administration at the American University of Beirut, voiced skepticism that the government will be able to proceed given Hezbollah’s opposition.