Following the government’s ratification of a draft law, it is only a matter of time before Morocco fully legalises the medical use of Cannabis.
However, the government on Thursday maintained that a ban be put on its recreational use.
Moreover, the draft law for medical use still needs approval from the parliament.
The move would “reconvert illicit” cannabis plantations into “legal and durable activities that generate jobs”, according to the text of the draft legislation.
According to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) last year, the North African country is the world’s biggest producer of cannabis resin or hashish.
In a 2020 study by the Global Initiative against Transnational Organized Crime, Morocco’s production of cannabis was estimated at more than 700 tonnes.
The Moroccan authorities have released new figures this week that show that 55,000 hectares (around 136,000 acres) of land in the northern mountainous Rif region were being used to illegally grow hashish in 2019.
Although the authorities did not give more recent estimates, production was estimated at 45,000 hectares in 2018.
Legalising cannabis for medical use will place Morocco in a global market that is growing at an annual rate of 30 percent, and by 60 percent a year in Europe, according to Morocco’s interior ministry.
State regulation will improve farmers’ living conditions and protect them from illegal drug trafficking networks, the ministry had said.