Given that Ontario has announced its plan for regulation of recreational cannabis on the 8th of September, which is as far away from the free market as possible, one might think that other provinces might follow their path. But not British Columbia.
B.C.’s minister of public safety and solicitor general, Mike Farnworth, has said that “his government has not yet made any major decision on what regulations for recreational marijuana are going to look like in B.C.”.
Since Ontario has started raiding illegal recreational marijuana dispensaries, Farnworth said that dispensaries in Vancouver are still allowed to continue their operations, but also warned them that certain major aspects of their businesses might have to change.
He also mentioned that perhaps the biggest problem for the upcoming legalization in his opinion might be the question of supply, which has been well regulated in the current medicinal system with licensed producers but might not work on larger scales.
Farnworth was asked in an interview if B.C. is considering creating a government monopoly like the one Ontario has proposed last week. His answer was:“We’re looking at all the different options there are for retail models and we haven’t landed on any particular one,”.
Another thing that came up during the interview was the fact that many of the provinces repetitively asked for a deadline extension, citing that provinces and the federal public services might not be ready for the law to be implemented in July 2018.
Farnworth said he still expects B.C. to meet the deadline that Ottawa set for the provinces to draft rules for the areas of the industry for which the provinces will take responsibility to regulate.
“There is a change coming in July 2018,” he said. “And the province is working to put in place a framework around distribution and retail to meet that timeline.”