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Dec 30, 2020

“Existing Marijuana Laws Make No Sense” – Kareem Musa

The question of legislation, as well as amendments to existing laws, insofar as the issuance of licenses and the cultivation of cannabis is also taking center stage in the ongoing discussion.  According to Minister Musa, revising the laws is necessary particularly where compliance is concerned.


Kareem Musa, Minister of New Growth Industries

“A lot of these individuals and companies who got licenses are mere speculators.  It reminds me a lot of like the oil industry, people get licenses but they have absolutely no history, no involvement in oil.  Similarly, they have no history or no investment in hemp but yet they are getting into it and so that is why it is important for us to engage consultants from across the world who know about these things, who are experts in this field in order for us to succeed.”


Isani Cayetano

“Will there be any amendment to the existing legislation to allow for this kind of activity without it being illegal?”


Kareem Musa

Kareem Musa

“There would absolutely have to be amendments to the law.  In addition, we would have to provide regulations.  In my opinion, it is an industry that has to be highly regulated, unlike the current hemp licenses that have been issued, those are not being regulated at all.  Under the misuse of drugs act, it only states that you are allowed to grow industrial hemp.  There is no regulation and so it is treated like any other commodity, like corn.  So you get your license and you go out into the field and you start planting hemp, but there is nobody.  There are no compliance officers, no inspectors, no monitors in place to go and check to ensure that the particular hemp that you are growing does not exceed the point three percent THC and then make it into marijuana, because there is that point three percent limit in terms of the THC.  And so, we don’t have anybody in country right now that is doing that kind of compliance checking; and so, we have a runaway train really, but at the same time we have a blank canvas when it comes to cannabis because we have not started it yet.  Yes, it is practiced and smoked recreationally, up to ten grams in Belize, but at the same time the law makes no sense and it makes no benefit for Belizeans the way it’s currently structured.”

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