By Roland Sebestyén
The lower house of the Czech parliament has approved a bill of amendments to the country’s drug laws to allow the cultivation and prescription of medical cannabis and hemp.
Prohibition Partners reports that while it still needs to be accepted by the Senate and the President, campaigners are expecting the bill to be passed, triggering the launch of a Czech medical cannabis industry.
The paper reports, according to the proposition:
- Medical cannabis may be cultivated by multiple licensed private groups that may also manufacture medical cannabis products
- Export of medical cannabis will now be explicitly legal
- The marketing of extracts such as isolates and tinctures will be permissible
- The system of electronic prescriptions for cannabis will be updated to ease the process for doctors and patients
- Hemp products with less than 1% THC will not be considered addictive substances, clearing the way for the cultivation and production of products with these concentrations.
Pavel Kubu, CEO of the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute, told Prohibition Partners: “Parliamentary approval of the bill is a major milestone for patients and advocates of medical cannabis in the Czech Republic.
“We do have to remain realistic in the amount of work that needs to be done. This bill could do much to advance medical cannabis and hemp in the country, but a lot of this rests with the implementation of the laws, and groups like the ICCI will be working hard with the government over the coming months to see that the interests of patients and the industry are honoured.”
Hana Gabrielová, the CEO of Hemp Point and president of Hemp Cluster, added: “This is a big win for advocates of medical cannabis and hemp in the country, especially considering the unanimous support from all political parties for the bill.
“The new regulations on THC concentrations in hemp are most welcome, but again, there is much work to be done.
“Our general elections are coming up in the Autumn, we will have to work hard and alongside the government to see that the new regulations will be implemented in an optimal manner, much of these details are yet to be hammered out.”
As we reported a few weeks ago, the decision of the lower house comes after the Constitutional Court repealed a part of the Criminal Court concerning the cultivation and storage of cannabis in the Czech Republic.
Also, in October 2019, the Czech government announced plans to subsidise the cost of medical cannabis from public health insurance.
The plan meant that patients would be reimbursed for up to 90% of the cost of their medical cannabis prescriptions.