A Comparison of Cannabis Policies: Germany versus France

A Comparison of Cannabis Policies: Germany versus France

On August 16, the German government passed a bill to legalize cannabis. By the end of the year, it will be possible to buy and possess up to 18 grams of marijuana from the age of 25. While Germany is legalizing, France still has very restrictive policies despite having one of the highest cannabis consumption rates in Europe.

Last week, French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin decided to send police reinforcements to Nîmes after cannabis trafficking and gang violence claimed the lives of a 10-year-old and 18-year-old. With Marseille, one of France’s main drug trafficking centers, registering around 32 deaths since the beginning of the year, mainly related to marijuana trafficking, the call to decriminalize or even legalize cannabis toe

Call for the legalization of cannabis

One such call comes from the French Economic, Social and Environmental Council (EESC) which, in an opinion published on August 28, again called for the controlled legalization of marijuana in France. This is not the first time that the EESC has addressed this issue. Earlier this year, the council recommended moving towards the legalization of marijuana as a means of establishing effective prevention policies and combating human trafficking and violence. For radical leftist MP and president of the National Assembly’s cannabis study group, Christophe Bex (LFI), decriminalizing marijuana is a matter of “common sense.”

In 2021, 10.6% of adults aged 18-64 consumed cannabis, according to a report published in December 2022 by the French Observatory on Drugs and Addictive Trends (OFDT), in collaboration with Santé publique France. France has one of the most repressive laws in Europe: cannabis use is punishable by a prison sentence of up to one year and a fine of €3,750. Will this policy be quickly adjusted in the context of drug violence in the future?

Source: euractiv.com (EN)

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