The South Korean government is moving forward almost three months after the legalization of medical marijuana and plans to allow imports of marijuana from next month.
The Food and Drug Safety Ministry said Tuesday that the National Assembly passed a bill to amend the law allowing imports and exports of non-hallucinogenic doses of medical marijuana.
In November, the National Assembly of the country voted on amendments to the Act on the Management of Narcotic Drugs after the country’s Ministry of Food and Drug Safety said in July that the prescription of cannabis – based drugs Epidiolex, Marinol, Cesamet and Sativex for a number of conditions, including epilepsy and HIV / AIDS, would be finally allowed for patients.
Why It’s Important
Tuesday’s news is a small step for South Korea’s take on marijuana. Despite legalization, access to medical marijuana is limited and determined on a case – by – case basis. Patients must apply to the Korea Orphan Drug Center and they will need a doctor’s prescription.
The country also maintains some of the most stringent laws on recreational consumption, and citizens risk prosecution even if they use cannabis in other countries where weed is legal.
The law enters into force on March 12. Meanwhile, the Organization for the Legalization of Medical Cannabis in Korea, a lobbying and advocacy group established last year, plans to persuade the government to increase the number of diseases that would qualify a patient for medical marijuana.