While tens of thousands of families already make a living from cultivating cannabis in Morocco, the government will study a bill on its “legal use”. The Cherifian kingdom is one of the largest producers in the world.
The Moroccan Council of Government will examine a bill on the “legal use” of cannabis on February 25, the services of the head of government reported on February 23 in a press release.
While on December 3, 2020, the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs recognized cannabis as therapeutic virtues, the debate on its legalization in the Moroccan kingdom where many families live from its culture, has become recurrent. But for now, the legal framework governing its possible legalization has not been disclosed.
At a time of rapprochement between Morocco and Israel, the Moroccan magazine As is suggested at the end of December to the government to “be inspired by the Israeli model” in terms of legalization. Hebrew state has in fact allowed cannabis for therapeutic purposes since 2006.
In 2015, the Authenticity and Modernity Party (opposition) tabled a bill to legalize cannabis for industrial and therapeutic use. At the time, the initiative was firmly rejected by the government, which now seems more open.
An annual production that would generate 23 billion dollars
Morocco is one of the main cannabis producing countries in the world, cultivated mainly in the mountainous region of Rif (north). Between 90,000 and 140,000 families are already living off kif, according to the organization Prohibition Partners cited by As is. However, its use, like its sale and purchase, is formally prohibited and punishable by prison.
Moroccan annual production has been estimated at over 700 tonnes, worth $ 23 billion, according to a study published in 2020 by the independent network “Global Initiative against Transnational Organized Crime”.
The Moroccan authorities assure that they are making “intense and continuous efforts” to fight against drug trafficking. More than 217 tons of cannabis resin were seized in 2020 in the kingdom, according to official figures.