In July 2022, top officials from three Europe countries met to discuss the future of legal cannabis in Europe. The meeting, which gathered government officials from Germany, Malta and the Netherlands in Luxembourg, was called to discuss how to approach the legalization of recreational cannabis in a complex market with a population of more than 530 million.
The European market is expected to gross more than 3 billion euro by 2025. However, as countries make moves towards legalization, key decisions need to be made about how to balance this emerging market with existing legal frameworks. Along with UN international treaties, one of the biggest obstacles is the Council Framework Decision 2004/757/JHA, which mandates that EU member states punish the production and sale of cannabis when committed “without right.”
Eventually, cannabis will be legalized across the Eurozone, but that can’t happen until countries are given a path forward that doesn’t put them in breach of international and EU laws. While some countries are eager to forge that path, others are lagging behind. Legalizing cannabis has various implications in different countries, as individual member states are at different stages of the legalization process.
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