Marijuana to be legal in Canada from October 17

Ann Santiago
June 24, 2018

While acceptance of legal recreational marijuana is a growing trend in the USA, it still remains illegal on a federal basis and in most states, including IL.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Wednesday marijuana will be legal nationwide on October 17. The move makes Canada the first G7 to do so and the second globally following Uruguay. The Senate passage of the bill was the final hurdle in the process. Trudeau said: "One of the things that we heard very clearly from the provinces is that they need a certain amount of time to get their bricks-and-mortar stores and their online sales ready".

Justin Trudeau tweeted that because it's too easy for kids to buy weed, "criminals reap the profits".

'Today, we change that.

The Senate passed the bill by a vote of 52 to 29, with two abstentions, lifting a prohibition on the recreational use of marijuana that has been in place since 1923. "If individuals do not agree with that law then they can challenge that law".

The task force recommended adults be allowed to carry up to 30 grams of pot and grow up to four plants.

Concerns expressed about the bill by members of Parliament include how to keep marijuana away from children and how to address organized crime and traffic deaths related to marijuana use. Marijuana purchases must be made through government-approved vendors that will be regulated by state and province. Those caught selling marijuana to a minor could face stiff penalties of up to 14 years in jail. The current bill restricts marijuana production, possession and sale to those over the age of 18.

C-45 is also expected to spark a billion-dollar industry, given total spending on marijuana could surge as high as 58%, especially as users are expected to be willing to pay a premium for legal access to the drug. When his government introduced Bill C-45 in April 2017, its backers framed it as an effort to discourage consumption among youth, while also crushing the illegal market. The revenue from the sales is equivalent to the entire snack bar industry.

Several Canadian marijuana firms, including Aurora Cannabis and Canopy Growth Corporation, are seeing a wave of investor excitement around marijuana legalization. It was widely reported that each province would have a say in how cannabis was to be sold, distributed and priced under the legislation from the beginning. Some provinces, like Ontario, are planning on provincially-run outlets, while others, like Alberta, will open up retail marijuana to the private sector.

The news was greeted with enthusiasm by marijuana advocates in the U.S.

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