BANGKOK, Aug 4 (NNN-BERNAMA) — The Thai cabinet today agreed to amend the Narcotics Act to widen medical cannabis production, a move towards developing a medicinal cannabis industry.
With the amendments, Thailand, the first Southeast Asian country to legalise cannabis in 2019 for medical use and research, is widely seen as taking another step to increase its competitiveness in the pharmaceutical industry and to be a leader in medical cannabis production.
Deputy government spokeswoman, Traisuree Taisaranakul said the proposed amendments would allow patients and medical professionals including traditional healers to grow and cultivate the plant.
She said the amendments would allow farmers with approval from the relevant ministry to work with pharmaceutical companies to grow cannabis for export and import.
“The proposed amendments will promote cannabis for medical use,” she added at the press conference today.
Deputy Prime Minister and Public Health Minister, Anutin Charnivarkul proposed amendments to the act to the cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister, General Prayuth Chan o-cha today.
Traisuree said the proposed amendments would be forwarded to the Office of the Council of State for legal review before taken to Parliament for consideration.
The existing act allows only government agencies and those who have sought permission and work with state agencies to produce, import and export cannabis. Medical professionals are not allowed to grow cannabis for medical treatment.
Thailand, which has a tradition of using cannabis to relieve pain and fatigue, dropped cannabis extracts from the narcotics list, last year.
In January, Thailand opened its first medical cannabis clinic in Bangkok.
Medical cannabis can be prescribed to patients showing 38 registered medical conditions.
Source: NAM News Network