POLITICS & INSTITUTIONS - POLITICS

Narcotics

Cannabis no longer high on the government's agenda



The three parties in the coalition, namely the DP, LSAP and Déi Gréng, are said to have reached an agreement on the cannabis issue this summer. (Photo: Matic Zorman)

The three parties in the coalition, namely the DP, LSAP and Déi Gréng, are said to have reached an agreement on the cannabis issue this summer. (Photo: Matic Zorman)

Put on hold by the health crisis, the project to legalise recreational cannabis simply does not seem to be a priority for the government coalition anymore. The coalition will give itself time to find an alternative to the initial concept developed by Etienne Schneider and Felix Braz.

The plan to legalise the cultivation and sale of cannabis seems to have been shelved, at least in its original form.

During an intervention at radio 100,7, minister of health, Paulette Lenert (LSAP) explained that "alternatives to the initial project were explored". The obstacles would be too numerous--notably in terms of European legislation--to achieve the project as imagined by Etienne Schneider (LSAP), former minister of health and economy, and Félix Braz (Déi Gréng), former justice minister.

The DP-LSAP-Déi Gréng coalition are said to have agreed this summer to look for another way.

As a reminder, this project was high on the agenda of the coalition agreement. It aimed to “decriminalise, or even legalise under precise conditions, the production on the national territory as well as the purchase, possession and consumption of recreational cannabis for personal use by adult residents.” From then on, the ambition was also "to establish a national production and sales chain under state control and thus guarantee the quality of the product."

Contacted by Paperjam, Etienne Schneider, now retired from politics, did not wish to comment on the government's work.

The most consumed drug in the country

As a reminder, the use of cannabis for medical purposes was authorised in June 2018, after a unanimous adoption by parliament.

Cannabis is the most consumed drug in the country. 23.3% of the population aged 15-64 have used it at least once in their lifetime, compared to 2.5% for cocaine. According to the report on the state of drug use in Luxembourg published in 2020, 27% of adolescents aged 15 to 18 "have used cannabis at least once in their lifetime.”

Cannabis accounted for 75% of the total number of seizures in Luxembourg in 2018 with a peak of 216 kg.

This story was first published in French on Paperjam. It has been translated and edited for Delano.