Canada to introduce legislation to legalize weed by July 2018: State broadcaster

The Canadian government plans to introduce legislation in April that would legalize recreational marijuana by July 1, 2018, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corp, citing a senior government official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

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The Canadian government is expected to introduce legislation the week of April 10, CBC reported, putting it on the path to become the second country behind Uruguay to fully legalize recreational marijuana for adult use. It said Bill Blair, a former Toronto police head who has been handing the marijuana file for the government, briefed the Liberal caucus on the matter this weekend

The country has skeptics who believe 2018 is ambitious and think full legalization is still a few years out. If the law is introduced and passed there’s a likelihood the burgeoning U.S. marijuana market could lose more business to Canada.

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Under the legislation the federal government would be in charge of securing the country’s marijuana supply, but provinces would hold the right to decide how the product is distributed and sold, according to CBC. For example Ottawa will set the age limit at 18, but provinces can opt for higher age limits if they want.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to legalize marijuana during his election campaign.