Greece Prepares for First Government-Backed Medical Marijuana Expo
Upwards of 120 businesses, exhibitors, entrepreneurs, and innovators will gather in the Greek capital of Athens on Friday to present medical marijuana products, technology, and applications to the general public. But the massive cannabis event won’t just be introducing the drug to the people. Politicians from across Greece will also attend the event in order to gather support for the government’s plans to generate revenue through a legal medical marijuana industry.
Athens To Host Balkannabis Expo 2018
Nearly a year ago, Greece became the sixth EU country to legalize medical marijuana, joining the Czech Republic, Portugal, Spain, Finland and of course, the Netherlands.
“From now on, the country is turning its page, as Greece in now included in countries where the delivery of medical cannabis to patients in need is legal,” Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said at a press conference.
In a sense, the decision represented the country’s history catching up with itself. History buffs may remember that the ancient Greek historian Herodotus made the first mention of cannabis in Western literature.
Then, a few months later, Yiannis Tsironis, Greece’s Deputy Minister for Agriculture, began calling for full adult-use legalization, including permitting Greek citizens to grow cannabis on their property.
Without a doubt, Greece is carrying this pro-marijuana momentum into Friday’s “Balkannabis Expo.” Government officials have come out in vocal support for the event. They’ve even gone so far as to officially back the Expo, according to the Greek Reporter. The hope is that the event will help to catalyze the medical cannabis industry in Greece.
The Balkannabis Expo set to take place this Friday, however, isn’t the first cannabis trade fair to hit Athens. Last year, the city hosted a similar event that attracted international investors and companies, including firms from Canada and Israel.
What makes this year’s medical marijuana expo different is simply that Greece’s SYRIZA government is officially supporting the event. But the country is also in a much better position to attract investors to its nascent MMJ program.
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