Marijuana Legalization Around the World

Legalizing marijuana is very complicate around the world. Federal law classifies cannabis as a 1st Schedule drug in the US. But several states have legalized the recreational and/or medicinal use of marijuana.

Some countries have fully legalized recreational marijuana. While others have only approved medical use. There are also countries where marijuana is decriminalize, which is a legal gray area. Means that cannabis is not legal for personal use, but it will not result in harsh penalties either.

Read, which countries have approved recreational marijuana, which have medical programs, and which have decriminalized the plant.

Views About Marijuana Around the World:

marijuana legality across the wordIn general, Europe is 420 friendlier than Asia and Africa. However, there are exceptions and not every country in Europe has legalized or even decriminalized cannabis for medicinal or recreational use.

In addition, the penalties for consuming or possessing cannabis vary widely across continents. For example, importing marijuana into Indonesia can result in a prison sentence of up to 15 years. Meanwhile, possession of cannabis in France usually results in a fine rather than imprisonment.

But there are always exceptions. Unauthorized use of cannabis in the UK can result in long prison sentences on a par with Indonesia. Bottom Line? Global cannabis laws have no rhyme or reason. The best tool you can arm yourself with before traveling abroad is knowing where you can and cannot legally possess cannabis for personal use.

Also read: International Laws

When it comes to recreational use, there are few countries in the world that have full recreational legal status. Many people consider the Netherlands to be one such place. But as mentioned above, cannabis is only “tolerated” and not legal per se. Some parts of Denmark also have “tolerance” policy. Spain has decriminalized cannabis for personal use and cultivation is allowed on private land. There only commercial production is illegal.

Technically speaking, there are only two countries where cannabis is legal at the federal level, Canada and Uruguay. Even then, non-citizens are prohibited from buying cannabis in Uruguay. Canada has passed legislation to federally legalize cannabis. Leaving it up to the provinces and territories to decide how to distribute it.

Countries with Medical Marijuana Programs:

marijuana is used only in medical purposeAustria, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, France, Germany and the United Kingdom have some cannabinoid-based medicines available on prescription. Spain has legalized the consumption of cannabis in private areas, and some cannabinoid-based medicines are available on prescription, but cannabis is still illegal in public spaces. Outside of Europe, Australia has a medical cannabis program.

As for the UK, cases like Alfie Dingley’s and Billy Caldwell’s could help create an official program for medical cannabis. We don’t know when that will happen, but part of their job is to advocate for patients everywhere and try to speed up the process wherever possible.

In the United States, some states have medical marijuana/cannabis programs. But at the federal level, cannabis and various cannabinoids (including THC and CBD, although hemp-derived CBD is technically legal in all states) are illegal and classified as a Schedule I controlled substance.

Classification as a Schedule I controlled substance means that cannabis has “no medical value” and therefore cannot be “prescribed” in any way. Other drugs of this category include heroin, ecstasy, and LSD. The solution for Americans? If you can, get a medical marijuana card and stay informed about the latest laws in your home state.

Countries That Have Decriminalized Marijuana:

marijuana is banned on which countries In some countries, cannabis is “tolerated” or decriminalized to some degree, depending on the state, region, local customs and the amount of cannabis a person possesses.

These countries include Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia (Northern Territory and South Australia plus the ACT), Austria, Barbados (if you are a registered Rastafarian), Belgium, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Dominica, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Estonia, Italy, Jamaica, Luxembourg, Israel, Malta, Mexico, Moldova, Paraguay, Portugal, Peru, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Slovenia, Switzerland and Trinidad and Tobago.

In some cases, the law may poorly enforce or treat as an administrative or health problem rather than a legal one. But punishment is still an option. When it comes to North Korea, nobody really knows how the state handles marijuana use. Some say it’s illegal, while others say no one in the country even treats the plant as a “drug.”


The legalization and decriminalization of marijuana continues to evolve around the world. Some countries where cannabis remains illegal impose very severe penalties on people who travel with or consume marijuana within their borders. Stay informed on the most current legal status of cannabis wherever you travel and always carry your medical marijuana card if you have one.

If you want to consume marijuana legally, keep with you a medical marijuana card from your home state.


also read: different types of constitution and law of torts


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *