President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, whose party strongly backs the proposal, is expected to sign the bill. An article on Politico has pointed out that this bill will be “sandwiching the U.S. between the world’s two biggest legal marijuana markets,” and experts believe that this will put pressure on the US to follow suit.
“My guess is at some point that drives the push to decriminalize or legalize,“ said Andrew Rudman, director of the Mexico Institute at the Wilson Center, pointing out that a majority of U.S. House members now represent states with legal markets. “I think Mexico probably gives more impetus to something that might have happened anyways.”
Given that the population of Mexico is of nearly 130 million people, this bill would make it the largest country to legalize cannabis at a national level. The article added that by comparison, the two other countries in the American continent that already took the step: Canada (37.6 million) and Uruguay (3.4 million), only have a combined population that adds up to less than a third of Mexico’s.
Morocco’s marijuana market
Another emerging marijuana market which is expected to take the world by storm is in Morocco. A bill expected to be approved shortly, would allow the farming, export and domestic sale of cannabis for medical and industrial use.
Though growing cannabis is currently illegal in Morocco, it has long been tolerated and the North African kingdom is known to be one of the world’s top producers.
The plant is mostly grown in the northern Rif mountains and the trade is currently controlled by drug traffickers. To this effect, the impending bill, aims to protect farmers from the latter, implore their income and give them a chance to gain from the booming legal international market for the substance.
The draft outlines a strategy to monitor the production, transportation and sales, of cannabis for medicinal use. However for now, commercial activities and consumption for recreational purposes will remain forbidden.