(L-R) Tara Desorbay, Ministry of Justice; Sam Tanson, Minister of Justice; Credit: MJUST

On Wednesday 15 June 2022, Luxembourg's Minister of Justice, Sam Tanson, presented the planned amendments to the law concerning the sale of medicinal substances and the fight against drug addiction.

The draft legislation represents a first step in the government's approach to developing legislation relating to recreational cannabis, as set out in the 2018-2023 coalition agreement.

The draft under consideration pursues a dual objective: the reduction of risks regarding the origin and use of cannabis, and the prevention of crime.

It is expected that any adult person will thus be authorised to cultivate up to four cannabis plants per household and this exclusively from seeds. However, it should be noted that the plants must not be visible to people located in the public space.

Personal consumption in the private sphere will be authorised. In the event of non-compliance with the place of cultivation or when the number of plants cultivated per household is exceeded, criminal penalties will apply. Consumption in public space remains prohibited.

It is also proposed to decriminalise the possession of small quantities of cannabis on the public motorway and thus it will be possible to issue a fine of €145. Possession of cannabis above the threshold will automatically be criminally prosecuted.

This legalisation of self-cultivation and private consumption is a first step, pending the finalisation of the initial concept as provided for in the coalition programme, aimed at countering the illegal cannabis market.

The government programme provides for the introduction of legislation, the main objectives of which will be to decriminalise, or even legalise under conditions to be defined, the production on national territory as well as the purchase, possession and consumption of recreational cannabis for the personal needs of adult residents, to keep consumers away from the illicit market, to reduce in a determined way the psychological and physical dangers associated with it and to combat crime at the supply level. To this end, it will be a question of establishing under the control of the State a chain of production and national sale and thus guaranteeing the quality of the product.