Archipelago Attorney General Says Hemp Has Huge Economic Potential
Last Friday, the Fijian parliament passed an amendment to the Drugs Act to decriminalize hemp to pave the way for the industrial use of the plant in the country. Bill authorizing the importation, possession, cultivation, sale and supply of industrial hemp.
According to proposition, cannabis plants containing up to 1% THC would no longer be controlled under the “Illegal Drug Control Act”.
Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum says that industrial hemp is a lucrative and largely untapped resource in the global economy due to misconceptions linking it to cannabis, according to Fiji Village.
According to him, hemp and marijuana are derived from the Cannabis sativa plant, but are grown differently, have different chemical attributes, and are used for different reasons.
Industrial hemp contains less than 1% THC and therefore cannot be used as a social drug, says Sayed-Khaiyum, who sees huge potential for Fiji's economy in the hemp industry.
Hemp cultivation is one of the most versatile, and can be used in a variety of industries including food, nutrition, personal care, wellness, paper, textiles, building materials , pharmaceuticals, plastic alternatives, biofuels and energy.
According to a recent report by Data Bridge Market, this market is expected to reach US$63 billion by 2029.
A 2020 analysis by Prohibition Partners estimates that the cannabis market in Oceania – which includes New Zealand, Australia, Fiji and other neighboring islands – could be worth US$1,55 billion by 2024 , with medical marijuana sales accounting for nearly 40% of the market.