Is Cannabis Legalization Moving Forward in Taiwan?

Is Cannabis Legalization Moving Forward in Taiwan?
High Times

No matter how slowly cannabis reform is moving in the West, there is one place where cannabis reform is moving at an even more tortoise-like pace: China and its territories, including the island of Taiwan. Merely smoking cannabis can land a user a jail term. Selling it can garner a life sentence. This even includes hemp. The slow track of reform here is not because there are no advocates pressing for reform. Indeed, cannabis legalization efforts are gaining momentum, including marches and reform rallies. This includes a demonstration outside of the Ministry of Justice in Taipei this month by the advocacy group Green Sensation—although organizers were pressured by police—several times—to disperse. A new effort to try to crystalize political support by the group has now managed to obtain 14,000 signatures.  This reform effort is also not happening in a vacuum. The Taiwanese legislature just passed a law reducing the penalty for cannabis cultivation for personal use from a minimum sentence of five years imprisonment to one, with a maximum of seven years.  It is hard not to see why. The most abused drugs here are amphetamines. Cannabis Reform in China While cannabis reform has been slow to gain traction in Asia, there are signs that this is now slowly changing. Thailand, for example, has just decriminalized cannabis use and is forging ahead with a medical cultivation program. Even recreational use here is not off the table. However, despite this “Asian Miracle,” China and its territories remain the last great uncharted territory for reform. On the Chinese mainland, even hemp seeds and CBD skincare products are banned—despite the fact that China remains the world’s largest hemp-cultivating country—producing about half of the world’s entire supply.  China classified cannabis as a dangerous narcotic drug as of 1985. This has not always been the…

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