The legality of cannabis for medical and recreational use varies by country, in terms of its possession, distribution, and cultivation, and (in regards to medical) how it can be consumed and what medical conditions it can be used for.
The use of cannabis for recreational purposes is prohibited in most countries; however, many have adopted a policy of decriminalization to make simple possession a non-criminal offense.
Countries that have legalized recreational cannabis use are Canada, Georgia, South Africa, and Uruguay, plus 15 states, 2 territories, and the District of Columbia in the United States and the Australian Capital Territory in Australia.
Countries that have legalized medical use of cannabis include Argentina, Australia, Barbados, Bermuda, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malta, the Netherlands, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Norway, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Thailand, the United Kingdom, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
AFRICAN COUNTRIES USING CANNABIS SATIVA – WEED
Malawi’s law allows for the establishment of the Cannabis Regulatory Authority, which will grant licenses to cultivate, process, store, sell, export and distribute. It also will issue permits to firms and institutions to conduct scientific research.
Zambia’s motivation for legalising cannabis exports is rooted in a hefty fiscal deficit and growing debt burden. Growth in external debt to $10.5 billion at the end of 2018 from $8.74 billion a year earlier has raised fears the country is headed for a debt crisis.
Zimbabwe’s health ministry has new regulations, allowing individuals and companies to be licensed to cultivate marijuana, known locally as mbanje.
In 2017, Lesotho became the first African country to allow the cultivation of cannabis for medicinal purposes.
Others have much more severe penalties such as some Asian and Middle Eastern countries where possession of even small amounts is punished by imprisonment for several years