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Panama Would Become the First Central American Country to Approve Medical Cannabis


Panama is 90 days away from having the law ready and becoming the first country in Central America to allow the use of medical cannabis.

After a long road led by activists who defend the legalization of cannabis for therapeutic and medicinal use, Panama’s National Legislative Assembly approved at the end of August a bill that would legalize this substance. Today, Panama is 90 days away from having the law ready that would make the country the first to regulate cannabis use in Central America.

The use of cannabis will be “for therapeutic, medical, veterinary, scientific and research purposes in the national territory,” according to the text approved in August. “This measure comes to help hundreds of Panamanians who up to now have been unable to acquire this medicine in Panama”, said Leandro Ávila, official deputy of the Democratic Revolutionary Party (social democrat).

Following in the footsteps of countries like Mexico, a few months ago, or Uruguay, pioneer in Latin America, Panama promoted the project from the unicameral Assembly, led by Crispiano Adames, deputy of the ruling party.

Those who promoted this law seek to improve the quality of life of people with glaucoma, epilepsy, arthritis, multiple sclerosis, migraines, convulsions and different types of pain, including cancer. Diseases that have been controlled over the years with the use of medical cannabis.

The law will allow the import, export, cultivation, production and commercialization of cannabis and its derivatives through a series of licenses granted by the Panamanian state, which will be carried out in designated areas with limited access and under a control system with surveillance cameras. Finally, only pharmaceutical companies or companies specialized in therapeutic services will be able to acquire and commercialize it.

The cannabis industry promises to be on the rise in the region, and although it is currently incipient, it is gaining strength in some countries that have already decided to regulate its development. (


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