The Eastern Cape government wants President Cyril Ramaphosa to establish an advisory committee to look into the possible commercialisation of the cannabis industry. The province is forging ahead with plans to formalise its potentially lucrative cannabis industry.
The provincial government, led by the Office of The Premier and Department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform, held a two-day stakeholder engagement in East London to find ways to develop the industry for the province.
Agrarian Reform MEC, Nomakhosazana Meth, says they want to influence and lobby the President to appoint the advisory committee.
“We need to engage with the highest level in the country the same approach the President has taken on the land issue. We would influence and lobby the President to have such an advisory committee on the issue of cannabis because there are issues that we cannot do anything as the province. Yet, we understand that we are among the provinces that are having this particular plant; we want to engage in its production.”
The Health Products Regulatory Authority says there are no registered medicinal cannabis products in the country and a number of hurdles need to be covered before taking a product to market. The market is ripe with potential.
KwaZulu-Natal could also benefit from the commercialization of the cannabis sector.
Medicines Control Officer, Mlungisi Wondo, explains the process of acquiring a licence.
“For selling medication it will be licenced through SAHPRA and then, if your product is registered, you will be allowed to sell it in the country. It’s not a cheap process, especially if you are going to develop your product. By the time you get to registration, you would have lost some millions even before selling your product. When you apply to be a grower for cannabis, it will be R23 980.”
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