x

Society

Greece OK’s 26 Licenses to Grow Medical Marijuana

August 12, 2019

ATHENS – Greece so far has approved 26 licenses to grow marijuana for medical purposes, seeking a bonanza from the business that had been banned and with more international companies showing interest.

Speaking to Prohibition Partners, a spokesperson for the new New Democracy said the government is “very excited about the possibilities of medicinal cannabis” with the state actively “seeking international investment.”

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said getting more foreign companies was one of his top priorities in a bid to speed a slow recovery from a 9 ½-year-long economic crisis and the Aug. 20, 2018 end of three international bailouts of 326 billion euros ($364.22 billion.)

The government, sworn in after winning July 7 snap elections over the former ruling Radical Left SYRIZA, new licenses will eventually lead to around €360 million ($402.21 million) of investment and create up to 2,250 jobs, the site said.

So far, there have been 72 applications and four rejected, the report added, with 42 others still under review, showing the keen interest in the marijuana cultivation, although recreational use is still outlawed if widely ignored.

So far, no firm has gained all three licenses required to begin production but there are expectations the process will be accelerated so that businesses can be up and running over the next year.

“There has been a change in government, but the new administration fully supports this type of initiative” Costas Vamvakas, Managing Director of Athens-based VK PREMIUM consulting group told Prohibition Partners.

“The country needs cash, and this is pure foreign direct investment. Ministers have told me explicitly they fully support the medicinal cannabis industry and will do everything to back it,” he said, adding he expects more investment with companies from Canada, Israel and The Netherlands also eager to bid.

“The market wants packaged dry flower, so expect a lot of high-THC production for medicinal use,” Vamvakas said. “The problem is there are some gray areas around THC production, and firms may require more explicit guidance from the government.”

The site said Greece is primed to be a big player in the European Union cannabis market could be worth up to €123 billion ($137.42 billion) by 2028 and the country could have an edge if it becomes, as Mitsotakis promised, more business-friendly.

Greece legalized medical cannabis in 2017, and in March 2018 repealed a ban on cultivation and production but businesses must set up a Greek company to buy or lease the land, and then prepare the documentation for the installation license and then apply for an operations license and a medical license from the National Organisation for Medicines to begin.

RELATED

ATHENS - Greece confirmed 10,783 new coronavirus infections in the last 24 hours, with 55 of these identified at entry points to the country, the National Public Health Organization (EODY) said on Sunday.

Top Stories

United States

JANUARY 14-17 GLENBROOK, NV – The Greek Orthodox Metropolis of San Francisco 2022 Young Adult Winter Retreat ‘Citizens of the Desert: Embracing Our Role as Christian Witnesses to Our World’ takes place January 14-17, Martin Luther King weekend, at Lake Tahoe, the Galilee Camp and Conference Center, 1776 U.

Associations

CHICAGO – The Greek Women’s University Club (GWUC) celebrated the organization’s 90th anniversary and the launch of the Hellenic Revolution’s 200th anniversary with a scholarship presentation to three female students on December 29th at Jameson’s Charhouse.

Cinema

The long-awaited historical epic film My Beloved Smyrna (Σμυρνη Μου Αγαπημενη)  has arrived in Greek cinema theaters after a glamorous premiere at the Megaron - Athens Concert Hall.

Video

TNH’s Happenings of the Week by Eraklis Diamataris

The National Herald’s Happenings of the Week (Jan 8 – Jan 15) as have been reported at the print and digital editions of TNH and presented by the TNH Editor Eraklis Diamataris.