Legal cannabis in Uruguay hits drug trafficking
This figure is taken from the last report of Institute for Cannabis Regulation and Control. The state seeks to increase production to meet all demand.
The Uruguayan government has caused losses of 22 million dollars to drug trafficking since the implementation of the 2013 Cannabis Regulating Law, the National Institute for Cannabis Regulation and Control (Ircca) reported on Wednesday.
"It is estimated that the volume of money that has ceased to flow through the illegal market since the implementation of public policy exceeds $ 22 million," says Ircca in Fifth State of the Market Report regulated cannabis as of November 30, 2018.
The Cannabis Regulation Law, passed in 2013 under the government of José Mujica (2010-2015), established three legal avenues for obtaining it for non-medical purposes: local cultivation, membership or membership in clubs and registered pharmacies.
After its approval, Mujica said that it was a “regulation” validating a reality that already existed under the noses of the citizens, “in a street corner, in front of the entrances of the high schools”.
The regulation, he added, was created with the intention of "appropriating a hitherto underground market and exposing it to the light of day.
Home growth and membership clubs have been operational since 2014 and the third option, pharmacy sales, since July 19, 2017.
Ircca has recognized that even distribution by sale in pharmacies does not cover the existing demand. For this reason, the Institute indicated that it is working on a new call to producing companies for February 11, while studying the new requests from pharmacies to become authorized points of sale.
In November 2018, the number of people licensed to access marijuana in a regulated way by the three lanes increased by almost 10% from the figure from the previous September report, the report adds.
As of November 30, and after 17 months of joint operation of the three access routes, 41 people were authorized to access marijuana in a regulated manner.
Of this number, 31 are registered as purchasers in pharmacies, 565 are registered with Ircca as national producers and 6 are registered as members of one of the 980 existing clubs.
Between July 19, 2017 and November 30 of last year, there were 383 pharmacy transactions, totaling 280 kilograms sold.
Of this total, 61,5% was sold in licensed pharmacies in Montevideo and the remaining 38,5% in other 18 departments in the country, with an average daily sale of 5 961 grams (5,96 kg).