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Mexico Has Passed A Bill That Would Legalize Marijuana For Recreational Use Nationwide

Lawmakers in Mexico passed the bill on Wednesday Mar. 10 that would legalize recreational marijuana.

Mexico’s lower house approved the bill with 316-to-216 votes. The bill will now go to the Senate for a final vote, which President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s party expects to pass through, according to BBC.

People are in favor of legalizes marijuana during rally.
People support the legalization of marijuana in rally.

If passed, the law is expected to turn the country into one of the world’s largest regulated cannabis markets.

The legislation would allow adults 18 years and older to carry up to 28 grams of marijuana and grow up to eight cannabis plants at home, the BBC reported. It would also allow for licenses for the cultivation, transformation, sale, research and export or import of cannabis, according to Reuters.

Youngster smokes a joint in favor of the legalization of Cannabis in Mexico photo.
A youngster smokes a joint during a cycling tour in favor of the legalization of Cannabis through the main streets of Guadalajara, Mexico. (Photo by ULISES RUIZ/AFP via Getty Images)

“Today we are in a historic moment. With this, the false belief that cannabis is part of Mexico’s serious public health problems is left behind,” Simey Olvera, a lawmaker with the Morena party, said, according to the New York Times.

The legislator of Mexico, Simey Olvera, urged his fellow legislators to approve the regulation of marijuana photo.
The legislator of the National Regeneration Movement Political Party in the Chamber of Deputies of Mexico, Simey Olvera, urged his fellow legislators to approve the regulation of marijuana and regulation of the recreational use of marijuana was approved. (Photo credit should read Luis Barron / Eyepix Group/Barcroft Media via Getty Images)

Proponents of the bill believe the decriminalization of cannabis would help tackle the country’s severe drug war and that the marijuana market presented by the legislation would also help contribute to the economy hurt by the pandemic.

Critics, however, argue it would not necessarily decrease the rates of cartel-related violence. A recent poll showed nearly two thirds of people in the country oppose legalizing marijuana.

If the bill is approved, Mexico would join Uruguay and Canada, becoming the third country to legalize cannabis, including recreational use, nationwide. Several foreign companies from Canada and California have expressed interest in tapping into the market, according to BBC.

A marijuana variety during a rally in Mexico City photo.
A man shows a marijuana variety during a rally in Mexico City. Mexicans took to the streets of the city on Saturday demanding a relaxation of drugs laws to allow medicinal and recreational use of cannabis. (Photo credit should read YURI CORTEZ/AFP via Getty Images)

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