Thailand's New Prime Minister Is Vowing To Restrict Cannabis Use Throughout The Country

The sales and distribution of cannabis will be restricted to medical use only.

Cover image via Bankok Post & Rappler

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Srettha Thavisin, Thailand's new prime minister, has vowed to restrict the use of marijuana to medical purposes only

Image via Bangkok Post

According to Time, there are almost 6,000 of weed shops across the country and the government is looking to "rectify" its cannabis policy, and limit the number of dispensaries that freely sell the drug in the next six months.

"The law will need to be rewritten. We can have that [cannabis] regulated for medical use only," Srettha said during an interview on Bloomberg Television in New York. He added that there cannot be a middle ground for recreational use.

"On recreational use, I do not agree with that," Srettha, who is also finance minister, told reporters.

Thailand became the first country in Southeast Asia to decriminalise cannabis when they made the move last year

However, the absence of specific measures took the government off guard, as they struggled to prevent unchecked use, particularly among children, reports Reuters.

Almost 6,000 weed dispensaries have popped up across Thailand since cannabis was decriminalised last year.

Image via Rappler

Sretta's Pheu Thai Party promoted a hard-line anti-drug campaign ahead of the May election, part of which included a vow to undo the policy to decriminalise cannabis

His party, in coalition with the Bhumjaithai Party, are seeking to reintroduce a cannabis bill into parliament, with tighter monitoring of the industry. However, they are against reclassifying cannabis as a drug.

The draft law covers permits for growing plants, as well as sales and distribution. Tighter measures include restrictions on sales at temples, schools, and theme parks. It is expected to take a year to finalise and pass.

Thailand first legalised the medical use of marijuana in 2018:

Last year, it was announced that Thai people could grow and smoke their own weed:

Meanwhile, Thailand's decriminalisation of cannabis has had ripple effects in neighbouring countries:

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