Members of the Malawi National Assembly have passed the Cannabis Regulation Bill that now allows for the cultivation, processing and export of marijuana for medical and industrial use.
Therefore, the bill allows for a Cannabis Regulation Authority (CRA) that is tasked with the licensing of farmers who will grow the product, strictly for medicinal use. Every farmer with a licence will thus adhere to the security measures regarding cultivation, processing, storage and distribution of cannabis.
Additionally, Registry Identification Cards will be issued to qualified patients of medicinal cannabis.
This development comes as the country is trying to find boosts to its economy, seeing that its tobacco industry, which is the biggest foreign exchange earner (60%), has been on a downward path as a result of anti-tobacco campaigns.
However, using marijuana for recreational use remains illegal in the country.
Anyone found acting contrary to these regulations will be liable to a fine of $68,147, and imprisonment of up to 5 years.
Other African countries which have relaxed laws on marijuana include Zambia, Morocco, Lesotho, Zimbabwe and South Africa.