The Knesset, Israel’s parliament, unanimously approved the export of medical cannabis products on Tuesday, The Washington Post reports.
Israel is a leading producer of medical cannabis products, but laws attempting to legalize export of the plant and its derivatives have struggled to pass the Knesset for years due to concerns among some lawmakers about potential diversion to the unregulated market.
Currently, Canada and the Netherlands are the only countries that allow for the export of medical cannabis products.
Israel-based medical cannabis company iCAN predicts the international market for Israeli cannabis will reach $33 billion in the next five years. Cannabis company shares in Israel rose nearly 10 percent following Tuesday’s announcement.
“This is a long overdue but welcome development. … Israel, already the most advanced nation in cannabis R&D will now be able to produce and market cannabis and cannabis-based products that will help millions of people suffering from illnesses including cancer, MS, Parkinson’s, sleep disorders, epilepsy, and PTSD, to name just a few.” — Saul Kaye, CEO of iCAN, in a statement
The new law includes language placing police in a supervisory role in the licensing of medical cannabis producers.
Israel‘s executive cabinet is expected to approve the law.