Argentina has high hopes for cannabis exports with fledgling new agency

Argentinian cannabis agency

The Argentinian government has launched the first working group of the National Cannabis Agency

Argentina on Wednesday launched the first working group of a new national agency to regularize and promote the country's nascent cannabis industry, which ministers hope will create new jobs and revenue-generating exports for the country. South American nation. The functions of the agency will be to regulate the production chain, national marketing and exploitation of the cannabis plant, its seeds and its derivative products for medicinal purposes.

The Minister of Health, Carla Vizzotti, and her counterparts from the Ministries of Economy, Sergio Massa; of Science, Technology and Innovation, Daniel Filmus; from Security, Aníbal Fernández; and the Secretary of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Juan José Bahillo, participated in the launch of the first working group of the National Cannabis Agency, an interministerial body that will promote public policies based on regulation of the use of medical and industrial cannabis.

During'event, which was also attended by the president of the agency, Francisco Echarren, and its vice president, Marcelo Morante, it was emphasized that the agency will regulate the production chain, national marketing and exploitation of the cannabis plant , its seeds and its derived products for medical use. This is a huge opportunity and a big leap forward for Argentina,” said the head of the Ministry of Health, who considered that the launch of the agency represents a very important step, among many others taken by the national government to generate legal frameworks that expand rights and support civil society with an empathetic approach.

“This opens the door for Argentina to start a new path in terms of industrial exports, based on enormous global demand,” Economy Minister Sergio Massa said at a conference launching the national hemp and cannabis agency, ARICCAME. All of this must be transformed into an industry that generates work, that generates exports for Argentina and that generates value.”

In this regard, the minister highlighted the joint work developed with the different ministries, but also with the different provinces, the National Congress, universities, CONICET and civil society organizations. “It is a collective construction, based on scientific evidence, which will undoubtedly promote access, equity and quality throughout the therapeutic space in relation to health”, a- she declared.

Vizzotti also pointed out that the creation of the organization "will be very important for the country from the point of view of creating jobs, organizing imports and export opportunities", while listing some of the progress made, such as the creation of the category of herbal cannabis products for medicinal use and applications; work to promote access to medical cannabis through the REMEDIAR program; public production of medical cannabis; and progress in incorporating cannabis into Argentina's food code.

For his part, Mr. Massa said that the launch of the Agency “means the start of a new industry in Argentina that has 25 different applications. An industry that will allow us to provide added value in the field of cosmetics, textiles, oil, in a countless number of economic sectors in Argentina and around the world,” he said.

In addition, the Minister of Economy pointed out that the agency "offers Argentina the possibility of taking a new path in terms of export industry from a huge global demand". And to add: “We already have demand for industrialization projects and programs as well as programs related to agro-industry at the Secretariat of Agriculture. All this must be transformed into an industry that creates jobs, exports to Argentina and generates value.

Mr. Filmus added that the Agency “is an initiative that represents the struggle of many families and which is also the fruit of the work of more than 400 researchers from CONICET and universities who study this issue. The network generated, at a difficult time when the issue was not well considered, very important research. Today, more than 40 centers of research are specifically dedicated to the study of cannabis, from biotechnology to the various fields of health.

In this sense, he highlighted “the presence of the State both in the launch of the Agency and in the public company that we created between CONICET, the Arturo Jauretche National University and the El Cruce Hospital, aimed to develop technologies to transfer to small and medium producers and provincial companies, so that large companies are not the only ones to have access to production technologies.”

Referring to the brand new agency, Aníbal Fernández said, from the Ministry of Security, “we are doing something positive to support and complement a public policy that has been denied for many years, and we are doing what must be done and which, at this moment, consists of putting things in place, ordering each of the steps, encouraging workers to continue working accordingly and with positive results for a people who demand it.

Thus, the National Cannabis Agency will encompass the entire production chain of hemp and cannabis for medicinal and industrial use, import, export, cultivation, industrial production, manufacturing and marketing, and promote scientific research and generation of knowledge in coordination with national universities, science and technology organizations and NGOs.

The mission of the organization is to become the engine of national development of the production chain and to obtain added value, which involves replacing imports of inputs and providing a regulatory framework for production activities, which have a great potential to generate chains with high added value.

It will also support and encourage entrepreneurs, SMEs and small producers in a sector. It should be noted that there are currently 45 cannabis development projects in Argentina, which will generate 5 jobs in the first year of implementation and boost regional economies. In addition, the policies that the agency will promote represent an expansion of the right to health, as it promotes the development of the guidelines of Law 000 on the medicinal use of cannabis (27).

The agency is a decentralized body, under the auspices of the nation's economy ministry, which will work in coordination with the ministries of health, science and technology, and security. It will also coordinate actions with all the provinces of Argentina and with the Federal Council for the Development of the Hemp and Medical Cannabis Industry, which will be composed of a representative of the Nation and a representative of each province and of the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires, thus guaranteeing a federal approach.

Massa said that the agency would begin on Thursday to regularize the programs and coordinate with the different provinces and the industrial sector, adding that Argentina already counts on the demand for projects related to the agro-industrial sector.

Francisco Echarren, who will lead the agency, said the industry could generate thousands of new jobs, as well as technological developments and new products for export.

Tags : Medical Cannabis and Legislation
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