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Too good to be true? Thailand seeks public opinion while moving to ban recreational cannabis use

“All recreational use is wrong,” says Thailand’s prime minister

LiFTED | Marcus Aurelius | 11 Jan 2024

For the past 18 months, people in Thailand have been floating on cloud nine because of the legalization of cannabis. Tourism in Thailand skyrocketed post-COVID-19 and one of the reasons was because it was becoming the Amsterdam of Asia. Now, leaders are putting the brakes on recreational use of cannabis and seeking public opinion.

People have until January 23 to offer feedback on proposed legislation that would ban the recreational use of cannabis. This is a major reversal in its law as Thailand became the first Asian country to decriminalize the recreational use of cannabis and allow many marijuana-related businesses to thrive. Thailand’s Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin has said, “All recreational use is wrong.”

Word on the Thai streets is that the wording is important. Because of a campaign promise, the PM must do something. If the law is changed and recreational use is banned, medical use will still be allowed. This means that dispensaries that used to be called Cloud Nine would change their names to something like Dr. Nine, but still be able to sell cannabis as medical marijuana. While the details aren’t clear yet, it seems as though the cannabis industry won’t be decimated and people in Thailand will still be able to get lifted.