Caritas has declared it isn’t against a Bill which will see Malta become an international centre for the production of medical marijuana.
In a position paper, the Church-run charity organization urged the authorities to ensure that cannabis-producing companies abide by strict regulations and that their staff pass through a rigorous screening process.
It also said the law must specifically only allow the production of marijuana for medical, and not recreational, purposes.
“Malta must be safeguarded against the risks that cannabis, like all other medicines, can bring about if it us used wrongly.”
Caritas said there is ample research which proves medical marijuana can alleviate pain, but warned Maltese patients not to consider it as a “magic pill” solution to ailments.
Three foreign companies, including Canadian giant Nuuvera, have already signaled their intent to set up medical marijuana production plants in Malta. Economy minister Chris Cardona said yesterday the companies plan to invest a total of €57 million and create 118 new jobs.
Opposition leader Adrian Delia came out strongly against the Bill though, arguing that its legal wording could open the door for factories to start producing marijuana for recreational purposes.
“The Prime Minister has said that discussion on medical marijuana should be decoupled from discussion on recreational marijuana, but the Bill doesn’t make this distinction,” he said last night.
However, the Opposition will vote in favor of a second Bill, which will loosen Malta’s medical marijuana laws so as to allow family doctors to prescribe the drug to patients.