Canada opens consultation on proposed approach to cannabis regulation

The Government of Canada has committed to legalizing, strictly regulating, and restricting access to cannabis. In April 2017, the government introduced Bill C-45, the proposed Cannabis Act. Subject to the approval of Parliament, the Government of Canada intends to bring the proposed Cannabis Act into force no later than July 2018.

The government is now seeking feedback on Health Canada's proposed approach to the regulation of cannabis.

The proposed Cannabis Act would create a strict national framework for controlling the production, distribution, sale and possession of cannabis in Canada. As part of this framework, Health Canada would be responsible for regulating production and setting standards for health and safety. The provinces and territories would oversee the distribution and sale of cannabis, subject to minimum federal conditions.

This consultation relates to Health Canada's proposed approach to the regulation of cannabis.

The deadline to provide written comments and responses to the questionnaire is January 20, 2018.

Health Canada is actively seeking the input of all interested and affected parties to inform the development of the regulations. In addition to the online consultation, Health Canada will continue to meet with provincial and territorial governments and work with Indigenous partners, as well as hold dedicated discussions with stakeholders to promote understanding of the proposal and seek input.

As previously indicated, the Government of Canada intends to bring the proposed Cannabis Act into force no later than July 2018, subject to Parliamentary approval. To meet this commitment, the final regulations will need to be published in the Canada Gazette, Part II, as soon as possible following Royal Assent. As such, it is important that stakeholders provide input during the 60-day consultation period as draft regulations will not be pre-published. Instead, at the end of this 60-day consultation period, Health Canada intends to publish a summary of the comments received as well as a detailed outline of any changes to the regulatory proposal, which will continue to provide industry and stakeholders with as much information as possible on the proposed regulatory requirements.

Click here for more information on the consultation.

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