Some people hope that the burgeoning cannabis industry will boost the economy in the Caribbean islands. Even though Barbados allows medical cannabis companies to operate, the debate on legislation related to recreational cannabis continues.
After more than a year since the island legalized medical cannabis use through the Medical Cannabis Industry Act in November 2019, Barbados officially allowed companies to operate cannabis in January.
The main initiative is to bring new revenue to the country as its tourism sector suffers from the COVID-19 pandemic. With tourism traditionally being a significant part of Barbados’ economy, there are limited tourist options in the region as many countries continue to restrict travel.
The South Florida Caribbean News reported that the economy contracted around 18 percent in 2020. In addition, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecast that the COVID-19 pandemic would have a significant impact on the region’s economic situation.
CanEx reported that Minister of Agriculture and Food Security Indar Weir spoke about the medical cannabis market in December.
“The industry has to get started. People are allowed to enter, (but) not everyone will be able to start at the same time, ”Weird said.
Weir continued: “[The economic benefits are] something we can’t turn a blind eye to. We must seize every opportunity we have now because it will not be here later. “
“There will be too many other options,” he said. “We have to use our position now.”
Barbados is familiar with cannabis, and the demand for medicinal and recreational cannabis has been growing for years. Although the country still strictly prohibits adult recreational cannabis use, there is a bill in place allowing registered Rastafarians to use cannabis spiritually.
Bermuda ready to consider adult cannabis
Bernews reported that Bermuda Prime Minister David Blurt said a debate on cannabis legislation is due to take place in parliament on February 19, 2021.
Attorney General Kathy Lynn Simmons is quoted as saying, “This bill will lawfully regulate all such activities, directly or in addition, to the cultivation, import, export, production, sale, supply, use or use Transportation of cannabis or medicinal products is related to cannabis or products made from cannabis or medicinal cannabis in Bermuda. “
Simmons continued, “The bill’s provisions will enable lawful activities in relation to cannabis plants, medicinal cannabis, cannabis products, and cannabis-infused food products.”
The bill should also give the cannabis licensing authority supervisory, enforcement and inspection powers. This includes lawful activities related to the plan, such as B. Adult personal use and the consumption of legally acquired cannabis, medicinal cannabis, cannabis-infused foods and cannabis products for those aged 21 and over.
The country hopes that legal access to these products will also reduce black market control over the cannabis trade. Regardless of what happens, Bermuda is well on its way to witnessing cannabis reforms that have already been seen around the world.