O Canada announced on Thursday a review of the legalization of recreational use of cannabis in the country, carried out four years ago, to assess its impact on youth, indigenous minorities and other populations, and to analyze its effect on economy and the illegal market marihuana.
Canada became the first developed country to legalize the recreational use of marijuana in October 2018.
It has also since passed a law that allows citizens with a criminal record for marijuana possession to be pardoned quickly and at no cost.
Canadian Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos was required to carry out a review of the legislation, and its administration and operation, three years after it came into force, so the review will take place one year later than planned.
The minister said it took longer than expected to start the review because the government wanted to “make sure things are done right” and plan for a broader review than required by law.
While a study on law enforcement is a priority, Duclos said the review will also look at complaints from the industry cannabis on high taxes, sales limitations, and advertising restrictions.
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce welcomed the review, saying its broad scope would help facilitate the growth of the legal cannabis sector.
“However, to effectively displace the illicit market and protect the public health and safety of all Canadians, the authorities, the companies, the industry and all levels of government will need to continue working together,” said the Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s National Cannabis Working Group. in a statement.
The review will assess the law’s impact on Canadian youth and progress toward the legislation’s goal of providing adults with access to regulated, low-risk, legal cannabis products, according to a government statement.
It will also review progress made in deterring criminal activity and displacing the illicit cannabis market.
Through this review, “we will strengthen the (Cannabis) Act to meet the needs of all Canadians while continuing to displace the illicit market,” Duclos said in a statement.
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