We have previously listed down major cannabis milestones for 2018. However, because the list was written in August 2018, it was partial and incomplete. Apparently, the last quarter of last year came with many more wonderful surprises for the global cannabis industry!
Here are the major achievements that took place before 2018 came to a close:
1. Canada officially legalized recreational cannabis.
In October, Canada formally opened its recreational cannabis market for all the world to see and to keep watch on. Canada’s legislative framework for cannabis will serve as a model and a measuring tool for future legislative moves to be taken by other first-world countries.
2. Another state in the U.S. legalized recreational pot.
In November, voters in Michigan approved a ballot measure legalizing the use of cannabis for recreational purposes. This makes Michigan the 10th state in the country to fully legalize the drug.
3. Two more states in the U.S. legalized medical cannabis.
4. South Korea legalizes medical cannabis.
South Korea surprised everyone when it legalized medical cannabis in late November 2018. The conservative nation became the first in East Asia to do so.
5. Thailand legalizes medical cannabis.
Another wonderful surprise came from Thailand around Christmastime. The country’s parliament decided to make medical cannabis legal as a New Year’s gift for the Thai people. It became the first country in Southeast Asia to legalize the drug for medical purposes.
6. Malaysia moves to throw away death penalty for cannabis-related crimes.
After reviewing its drug laws, Malaysia decided to move to abolish the death penalty for cannabis-related crimes. While this is far from cannabis legalization, many consider this a small victory in light of the fact that drug trafficking in Southeast Asia is often punishable by death and that there is zero to very little distinction between hard drugs and cannabis.