The health ministry has proposed amendments to the Medicines and Related Substances Act, which, if passed into law, would allow for cannabis plant material and products containing THC to be used for private consumer purposes without being regulated as a Schedule 6 substance.

However, this comes with the caveat that it will only qualify if the products have no pharmacological action or medicinal purpose.

According to Altair Richards, an executive at ENS’ Corporate Commercial Practice, this change would mean that “more products that are currently regulated as Schedule 6 substances will, following the publication of the final amendment to Schedule 6, not be regulated as Schedule 6 substances.”

This adds an important step to South Africa’s journey of decriminalizing cannabis use and clearing up the regulatory minefield surrounding its use, both privately and commercially.

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