Thailand is fast becoming the main competitor in the Asian medical marijuana and hemp markets. However, full commercialization of the sector and liberal access for private companies is not expected to be implemented until 2024, according to a new report.
The Thai medical cannabis market is characterized by high potential. Having rapid regulatory changes and a considerable degree of protectionism. Based on Vienna-based Cannabis Catalysts review.
“Yet for companies interested in the Asian cannabis market, there is a strong case for expanding into Thailand. Notes the report.
By 2024, Cannabis Catalysts estimates that the entire Thai medical cannabis market could be worth between $ 46 million and $ 312 million. It also depends on a wide range of factors.
Among the report’s estimates for 2024:
- Medical marijuana tourism could be worth $ 60 million.
- The export potential of medical cannabis is over $ 618 million.
- The ancillary market for medicinal marijuana could be valued between $ 808 million and $ 1 billion.
The report comes with a dose of sobriety, however, noting that the industry at large is currently a vision and that only a few dozen patients are participating in it.
“While the basic framework for cannabis legislation was released shortly after the resolution, there is a lack of regulatory specifications so far. Many aspects of legal procedures are simply not yet defined, ”the report stresses.
“This delays the formation of appropriate supply infrastructure. Unlike the currently insufficient supply of medical cannabis, the demand for therapy is quite high.
An amendment is expected to be voted on shortly that would allow members of the public to grow up to six plants for their own medical use.
Participation of private companies, especially those owned by foreigners, is limited
The report says: “Private entities can only work in cooperation and under the authorization of a state-controlled institution. This includes ministries, public bodies, universities and hospitals. In addition, only companies registered in Thailand and owned by Thai citizens are qualified to cooperate with a licensee. “
Private companies are not among the groups allowed to hold a medical marijuana license. However, this does not mean that they are excluded from the market.
According to the report, “Private companies wishing to cultivate cannabis must work in cooperation and under license from one of the authorized groups. The company must additionally be registered under Thai law. They must have a registered office in Thailand. – And at least 2/3 of the directors, partners or shareholders must be of Thai nationality.
The Cannabis Catalysts report calls this a “protective measure” by the Thai government. Mainly to protect the public investments of large foreign players.
Of the 442 medical marijuana licenses that Thai health authorities have issued to date:
- 416 are dedicated to distribution.
- 12 were awarded for culture.
- 14 were granted for processing and extraction.
Thirty-eight medical conditions are subjected to cannabis therapy. Three of the most serious conditions for which medical cannabis therapy is permitted. These are the side effects of chemotherapy, epilepsy and multiple sclerosis.
Source: Marijuana Business Daily