New Center Left Government Announces Legalization On Its Agenda

Cannabis is set to be made legal for recreational use in Luxembourg according to the new ruling coalition in Parliament. During a late November press conference held by the Socialist Workers Party, the Democratic Party and the Greens, the coalition partners announced that not only was full legalization on their agenda, but that the change is overdue.

According to Bill Wirtz, a policy analyst at the group Consumer Choice Center, a Luxembourg-based consumer rights group,

“Luxembourg will become the first country in the EU to actually legalise cannabis, as the Czech Republic, Portugal, or the Netherlands either tolerate or decriminalise it. This sends a strong message to other countries in the EU. The ice is broken.”

What Does That Mean For The Rest Of Europe’s Timeline?

This development is a very strategic one for several reasons.

First, as Wirtz notes, it will create a legal, recreational market, which unlike Switzerland, includes THC.

This will, no doubt, also now galvanize the Swiss to put the THC in their own reform, which has been edging this way for the last several years. In fact, this may push Switzerland to move even faster as it is not part of the EU.

It will also, undoubtedly, continue to help the Dutch reform their own market. The industry is becoming more regulated on the recreational and medical end. See the most recent (unprecedented) announcement that the Dutch and Germans would increase exports and imports of medical cannabis across the shared Schengen border.

And of course, last but not least, this spells the end of other EU-wide issues. Namely the reluctance of the German stock exchange (the Deutsche Börse) to allow the clearance of certain kinds of cannabis stocks in Frankfurt and other German exchanges. The state of legality in Luxembourg, home to the clearing arm of the Deutsche Börse, is critical to how stocks may be listed and cleared in Germany.

This development is also likely to push the issue of full reform forward across Europe, even though fast forward developments are not likely to come here as easily as elsewhere. That said, what it does appear to herald is the beginning of a real recreational industry in Europe, outside of Holland. And further one that directly affects the entire public market discussion, across the entire continent.

A Green, Legal Island In Luxembourg?

The idea might be anathema to right-wing politicians (noted Brexiter Nigel Farage has just noted the development with disdain), but it sounds like a great idea to just about everyone else as it has become painfully obvious that cannabis prohibition has failed. A fully legal cannabis industry has yet to find a real home in Europe as Canada, several U.S. states, and Uruguay have moved forward with their own legalization regimes. It appears that Luxembourg is on course to be the first European nation to give cannabis legalization a home, a positive move that will reverberate throughout the EU and the globe.

Learn the latest about the global cannabis market at the International Cannabis Business Conference in San Francisco on February 7-8, 2019. After San Francisco, the ICBC will be heading to Europe for a special event with Spannabis in Barcelona, Spain, on March 14th before returning to Berlin, Germany, on March 31t to April 2nd. Secure your early-bird tickets and get the info you need and network with top investors, entrepreneurs, regulators, and advocates from around the globe.