Panel fears weed could hurt tourism

Panel fears weed could hurt tourism

People buy cannabis from a mobile stall on Khao San Road in Bangkok last month. (Photo: Varuth Hirunyatheb)
People buy cannabis from a mobile stall on Khao San Road in Bangkok last month. (Photo: Varuth Hirunyatheb)

The House committee deliberating the budget bill fears the decriminalisation of cannabis could have a negative impact on tourism.

A Palang Pracharath Party MP said the panel raised concerns as it discussed budget allocations for the Public Health Ministry.

Some committee members questioned whether the legal consumption of cannabis would affect tourism and whether there are studies showing how long cannabis stays in the system. They also wondered if related agencies had come up with any measures to prevent schoolchildren from taking cannabis in schools.

Critics say that despite the decriminalisation of cannabis, the government has not introduced enough regulations to prevent its use from being abused.

This could ruin Thailand's reputation as a tourist destination, they said.

The secretary-general of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) told the panel that the Public Health Ministry has issued a ban on cannabis smoking in public areas and selling cannabis to people under 20 years old.

He added the FDA has approved the use of cannabis as an ingredient in about 1,400 food and beverage products.

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  • abuse: to use something in a bad, dishonest, or harmful way (an abuser is a person who does this) - ใช้ในทางที่ผิด
  • allocation: an amount of or share of something, in this case, the national budget - การแบ่งส่วน
  • approved: given official agreement or permission - ได้รับการรับรองแล้ว
  • budget: (n) the money that is available to a person or an organisation and a plan of how it will be spent over a period of time -
  • committee: a group of people who are chosen, usually by a larger group, to make decisions or to deal with a particular subject - คณะกรรมการ
  • consumption: using, eating or drinking something - การบริโภค
  • decriminalisation: making it not a crime or less of a crime, often to end a waste of resources consumed by putting large numbers of people in jail -
  • ingredient: one of the substances that are combined to make something - ส่วนผสม
  • panel: a group of people who make decisions or judgments - คณะกรรมการ
  • prevent (verb): to stop somebody from doing something; to stop something from happening - ขัดขวาง, ป้องกัน, กัน, กีดขวาง
  • reputation: the opinion people have about how good or bad someone or something is - ชื่อเสียง
  • ruin: to damage something so badly that it loses all its value, pleasure, etc; to spoil something - ทำลาย
  • system (noun): a human or an animal body, or a part of it, when it is being thought of as the organs and processes that make it function - ระบบ
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