(ANSA) - LA VALLETTA, 01 DEC - The bill that provides for the legalization of cannabis for personal use in Malta has passed the penultimate step before the final approval, with the vote in the third reading in Parliament.
During the examination by the Parliamentary Commission, which concluded yesterday, no essential amendments were introduced and the final vote will soon be scheduled.
The reform, commissioned by the Labor government with the declared intent to target organized crime that controls the black market of marijuana and its derivatives, will legalize the possession of cannabis up to 7 grams for the personal use of adults. Cultivation of a limited number of plants will be permitted and non-enclosure clubs may be created for collective cultivation. On the other hand, the sale outside the legal channels will remain a serious crime. Public use will not be allowed and a state authority will be established to control the supply chain to prevent part of the production from being diverted to the black market.
The government rejected the proposal to introduce a maximum limit on the concentration of THC, put forward by the Nationalist Party, the Secretariat for Catholic Education and Caritas, explaining that any 'roof' would in fact be an open door to traffickers.
"It is not true that with this law we encourage people to smoke cannabis," Reform Minister Owen Bonnici said in the final reply to the committee. "On the contrary, we will try in many ways to encourage them to make better choices and find pleasure in other forms, such as sport, culture or volunteering. But if an adult decides to smoke cannabis, we must treat them as an adult and give them a safe channel. to get it. We believe that this way is better than that of criminalization ".
In this perspective, the law also provides for the cancellation in the criminal record of all violations of the past due to possession of small quantities for personal use.