PM: Cannabis to be relisted as a narcotic by year-end

(Bangkok Post File Photo)
(Bangkok Post File Photo)

Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin on Wednesday said that cannabis would be relisted as a narcotic by the end of 2024.

Writing on his X account, Mr Srettha said he wanted the Ministry of Public Health to issue a regulation allowing only medicinal use of cannabis.

Thailand in 2022 became one of the first countries in Asia to decriminalise marijuana. While the idea was to promote medicinal use, recreational use skyrocketed.

The previous government failed in its attempts to pass a cannabis bill. The Ministry of Public Health has drafted a new bill that the former minister, Cholnan Srikaew, hoped to get through Parliament before the end of 2024.

The bill would clearly spell out approved medicinal uses of the plant, as well as what forms of consumption would be banned.

The new minister, Somsak Thepsuthin, said this week that he wanted to listen to people’s opinions first before making a final decision on the future of cannabis. He said the process would not take long.

Mr Srettha, meanwhile, said that the drug problem in the country is a major national agenda item and all agencies must work together to solve it. He said he wanted to see “clear results” within 90 days.

“Drugs are a problem that destroys the future of the country. Many young people are addicted,” he said.

The move to re-criminalise cannabis comes despite rapid growth of a domestic retail market for marijuana, with thousands of shops and businesses springing up in the past two years. One study projected that the industry would be worth up to $1.2 billion by 2025.

Changing the rules again would be a bad move for the economy and deal a big blow to small businesses and consumers, said the Cannabis Future Network.

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  • addicted: unable to stop using or doing something - ซึ่งติดนิสัยในบางอย่าง
  • bill: a proposal for a law - ร่างกฎหมาย
  • blow: an event that damages your chances of success - สิ่งที่ทำให้เกิดความเสียหาย
  • consumption: using, eating or drinking something - การบริโภค
  • decriminalise: make not criminal, so that people can do activity without breaking the law -
  • domestic: inside the country being talked about - ภายในประเทศ
  • draft: to write a document, plan, etc. that may be changed before it is finally accepted - ร่าง
  • draft bill: a proposal for a law - ร่างกฎหมาย
  • economy: the relationship between production, trade and the supply of money in a particular country or region - เศรษฐกิจ
  • medicinal (adj): helpful in the process of healing illness or infection - ซึ่งมีคุณสมบัติเป็นยา
  • narcotic: an illegal drug such as heroin, cocaine or crystal methamphetamine - ยาเสพย์ติด
  • recreational: involving enjoyment - เกี่ยวการสันทนาการ
  • regulation: an official rule that controls the way that things are done - กฎระเบียบ
  • retail: to sell directly to the public for their own use - ขายปลีก
  • skyrocket: to increase very quickly - ลอยขึ้นสูงอย่างฉับพลัน
  • spell out: to explain something in detail - ระบุรายละเอียด
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