Cannabis Legalization could be effective at best in the autumn.
Canada has taken another step towards legalizing cannabis for recreational purposes and will become the first G7 country to legalize this soft drug, with a government-mandated entry into the fall.
Thursday, a majority of senators (56 for, 30 against and one abstention) voted the bill tabled by the government of the Liberal Justin Trudeau, not without having led a parliamentary battle with many amendments, delaying the free consumption of cannabis initially planned to coincide with Canada’s National Day on July 1st.
The cannabis law, as amended by the senators, will now return to the MPs for final adoption before receiving the royal seal.
Due to the suspension of Parliament’s work in two weeks, until mid-September, legalization could be effective at best in the autumn.
First country of the G7
If cannabis use is already legalized in Uruguay, Canada will be the first G7 country to legalize this soft drug, a campaign promise by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
The head of government – who had confessed in 2013 that he had already smoked “five or six times” a joint with friends – justified the legalization to get traffickers off the market and protect young people.
Justin Trudeau is also convinced that after Canada, other major countries will follow.
Some Western countries “recognize that Canada is being bold […] and recognize the honesty” of the country, which admits that the current repressive system “does not work to prevent our young people from having easy access cannabis, “Justin Trudeau told AFP a month ago.
“In many countries, especially in Canada, it is easier [for a minor, Ed] to buy a seal than to buy a beer, it makes no sense! And, in addition, it is a source incomes for organized crime, “he added.
After the vote at Snat Thursday evening, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould repeated the same arguments, saying that this law “will create a strictly regulated market for cannabis, to keep it out of reach of young people and to deprive criminals “.
By wishing to remove organized crime and illegal trafficking, the Canadian government will, in the process, collect tax revenue in an estimated market of C $ 6 to 7 billion (€ 3.9 to 4.5 billion).
For each gram of cannabis sold for less than or equal to $ 10, an excise duty of one Canadian dollar ($ 0.65) will be collected with a split between the federal government (one quarter) and the provinces. Added to this are the federal and provincial consumption taxes ranging from 10% to 15% depending on the province.