Germany is preparing to legalize the recreational use of cannabis, the new government has announced.
The coalition government includes representatives of the SPD, Free Democrats and Green parties, which reached a power-sharing deal after the recent national elections.
When they announced their plans to the government today, they also said cannabis would be regulated and sold to adults in licensed stores, and also proposed a number of other measures, including reducing consumption. coal and other plans to respond to Covid-19.
A recent report compiled by the German Institute for Competition Economics (DICE) said that the legalization and taxation of cannabis could contribute to the economy of 4.7 billion euros, as it would also allow save money currently spent enforcing the laws.
In that report, Professor Justus Haucap also argued that legalization could create 27,000 jobs and allow the government to use the licensing process to monitor the quality of cannabis for sale, reduce addiction and prevent minors from putting the drug on the market. hand over it.
Last week, a coalition government spokesperson said: âWe are introducing the controlled distribution of cannabis to adults for consumption in licensed stores.
âThis will allow quality control, prevent the transfer of contaminated substances and ensure the protection of minors.
“We will assess the law after four years for social impact.”
Cannabis was legalized in Luxembourg in October, making it the first country in Europe to fully legalize the drug for consumption and cultivation.
The agreement of the parties involved in the coalition will likely see SDP leader Olaf Scholz take the post left vacant by Angela Merkel as German Chancellor.
His appointment is expected to be voted on in Parliament on December 6.
The 180-page plan, which includes much more than just rules on legalizing cannabis, is also expected to be voted on within the next 10 days, after which it will become legally binding.
Before that, the Greens will hold a ballot of around 125,000 members and the conventions of the other two parties will seek to endorse the document.
Scholz said the so-called âtraffic lightâ coalition – named after the colors of the three parties involved – will not seek âthe lowest common denominator, but the politics of big impactsâ.
Merkel had previously held the top post in Germany for 16 years, but her party, the Christian Democratic Union, was battered in the election, leaving her out of government.