During a meeting of Pakistan’s National Assembly Standing Committee on Science and Technology last month, Minister Shibli Karaz suggested that at least four officially sanctioned cannabis cultivation sites would exist in Pakistan by the end of the year, The Express Tribune reports.
The policy comes a little over a year since officials approved language for a government-controlled hemp program in hopes of positioning Pakistan to partake in the global, multi-billion-dollar CBD marketplace.
“There is no policy on cannabis in the country yet. The policy of cannabis cultivation will come into being by December.” — Karaz, via the report
During the meeting, officials estimated that the global cannabis marketplace was set to hit Rs95 billion — or just over $550 million — by 2025; the committee also discussed the rising commercial value of cannabinoid oil.
While the initial reforms were to focus on growing cannabis for industrial purposes — or hemp — the country’s first phase of cannabis cultivation is already in motion after Pakistan’s Anti-Narcotics Force approved four separate sites for cannabis cultivation. Additionally, officials said there are already cannabis oil production experiments underway and that the country plans to construct greenhouses for cannabis cultivation in Lahore, Karachi, and Islamabad.
Addressing concerns from some politicians about the illegal export of raw cannabis materials, Faraz said the government would implement strict measures to prevent product diversion.
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