What Thailand’s Medical Marijuana Law Means for Foreigners

by Admin on February 11, 2019

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At the tail end of 2018, Thailand’s National Legislative Assembly passed an updated narcotics law legalizing marijuana for medical use.

For the most part, foreign investors, tourists, and expats are explicitly excluded from the new law.

According to Thailand business lawyer Jitsopin Narasettapong, foreign entities and companies have been banned from producing, selling, importing, exporting and possessing medical cannabis under a “Thai First” backlash after several non-Thai applicants attempted to secure patent protection for their medical weed products.

“Those companies could have been able to enter the new medical marijuana landscape in Thailand with a technological advantage over Thai companies who just entered the business of medicinal cannabis,” said Narasettapong. “It potentially could have created an unfair marketplace for Thai marijuana start-ups entering the scene.”

But foreigners are not shut out entirely from obtaining or producing medical weed in the Southeast Asian nation.

In fact, one such exception allows visitors with certain illnesses or conditions to import, export, and possess marijuana assuming they get consent from a certified doctor and the Thailand FDA, which is responsible for regulating medical marijuana in the country.

Airlines and cruise ships will also be able to petition the FDA for a license to use marijuana as a treatment for passengers with certain illnesses.

And lastly, all companies that are established under Thai law and have a local office in Thailand are allowed to apply for an FDA license to possess, buy, sell, and purchase as long as two-thirds of the capital is from Thai sources or two-thirds of the board is made up of Thai nationals.

Read the full story here.

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