The government of German is setting in motion plans to legalize the sale of cannabis for recreational purposes, aiming to have legislation ready later this year.
The Health Ministry said on Monday that it will start holding expert hearings on several aspects of the issue Tuesday. It added that over 200 medical, legal and other medical representatives would take part, along with officials from several levels of government and unidentified international experts.
The plan to legalize controlled sales of cannabis to adults in licensed shops is one of a series of reforms outlined in last year’s coalition deal between the three socially liberal parties that make up Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s government.
They mentioned that the plan would ensure quality control while also protecting young people, and agreed that the “social effects” of the new legislation would be examined after four years.
Scholz’s coalition took office in December. In early May, Health Minister Karl Lauterbach said that he planned to draw up draft legislation in the year’s second half after the hearing with experts.
The five hearings, which will be held by the end of this month, will address what measures are required to ensure the best protection for young people and of health and consumers, government drug czar Burkhard Blienet added.
He noted in a statement, “Like several others, I have worked for years toward us in Germany finally ending the criminalization of cannabis consumers along with beginning a modern and health-oriented cannabis policy.”