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Thailand Cracks Down on Recreational Cannabis Culture as Government Prepares Ban

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Thailand Cracks Down on Recreational Cannabis Culture as Government Prepares Ban

(CTN News) – Thodsapol Hongtong is smoking with his buddies at the Green Party, a gathering place for recreational cannabis fans in Thailand’s capital, Bangkok, to socialize and have fun. But it’s a pastime that could be coming to an end.

The 31-year-old influencer, who owns a cannabis shop, frequently promotes recreational marijuana as beneficial to the country’s economy on his web channel Channel Weed Thailand.

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Government Set to Ban Recreational Use, Despite Booming Cannabis Sector

According to an estimate by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, the burgeoning cannabis industry might be worth $1.2 billion by next year.

“Where [else] in the world can we lie around on the beach and enjoy a joint,” Thodsapol told Reuters, taking a drag from his bong.

The Thai government plans to ban recreational cannabis use by the end of the year. Medical use will still be allowed.

In an interview with Reuters last month, Thai Health Minister Cholnan Srikaew classified recreational marijuana as a “misuse” of cannabis that negatively impacts Thai youth and may lead to other drug abuse.

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Thailand became the first Asian country to decriminalize recreational cannabis in 2022, sparking a new wave of weed appreciation among the population.

Neon signs of cannabis leaves in several languages can be seen on many street corners in Thai towns and cities, indicating the presence of tens of thousands of stores, spas, pubs, and gaming clubs offering a wide range of cannabis strains.

Cannabis-related festivals, such as last year’s joint-rolling competition in Phuket, have become more prevalent in tourist locations, attracting pot enthusiasts from all over the world.

The Thai government’s proposed law prohibiting recreational cannabis usage is scheduled for cabinet approval later this month.

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Arsi Mughal is a staff writer at CTN News, delivering insightful and engaging content on a wide range of topics. With a knack for clear and concise writing, he crafts articles that resonate with readers. Arsi's pieces are well-researched, informative, and presented in a straightforward manner, making complex subjects accessible to a broad audience. His writing style strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and casual approachability, ensuring an enjoyable reading experience.

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