The United Nations has voted to remove cannabis from its classification as a dangerous drug. This week the U.N. Commission on Narcotic Drugs voted to remove cannabis and cannabis resin from a category of the world’s most dangerous drugs. This decision could potentially jumpstart the global medical marijuana industry. Many cannabis companies have eyed global expansion, but the markets have proven to be challenging as laws have remained strict.
The Vienna-based U.N. agency said in a statement that it had voted 27-25, with one abstention, to follow the World Health Organization’s recommendation to remove cannabis and cannabis resin from Schedule IV of the 1961 Convention on Narcotic Drugs, where it was listed with heroin and several other opioids. The drugs that are on Schedule IV are a subset of those on Schedule I of the convention, which already requires the highest levels of international control. The agency voted to leave cannabis and cannabis resin on the list of Schedule I drugs, which also includes cocaine, Fentanyl, morphine, Methadone, opium and oxycodone, the opiate painkiller sold as OxyContin.