Canada under growing pressure to lift medical cannabis import ban

MJ Biz reports

A disparate group of countries, businesses and organizations is calling on the Canadian government to remove nontariff barriers effectively blocking commercial imports of unapproved medical cannabis, even as some local players say the ban is needed to protect squeezed domestic cultivators.

Businesses – some with their headquarters in Canada but production overseas – have joined countries such as Colombia and Jamaica in calling out Canada for prohibiting foreign competition within its medical marijuana industry, which largely remains closed to foreign exporters.

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s cannabis working group joined the call to allow foreign competition within Canada, albeit in a limited form.

And in October, the Colombian government raised concern about Canada’s commercial-import restriction with the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Industry sources say the crux of the issue is that Health Canada, the government body tasked with regulating imports and exports of cannabis, is dragging its feet in allowing commercial medical cannabis to be imported into the country.

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