The Isle of Man government has started accepting applications for the manufacture, distribution and export of medicinal cannabis products.
The Isle of Man with 84,584 inhabitants is a self-governing dependency of the British Crown in the Irish Sea between England and Ireland.
Earlier this year, the government put in place a legal framework that allows commercial operators to grow, manufacture, distribute and export cannabis products under license. The Gambling Oversight Commission (GSC) is the regulator for the sector and has drawn up the guidelines for the framework and paved the way for applications.
The new industry is expected to create 250 new jobs and £ 3 million annual benefits for the island in the coming years and will play a significant role in the Isle of Man’s economic recovery from COVID.
The GSC takes elements from the gambling regulatory framework and is confident that it has laid a solid foundation for medical cannabis.
“What we have now will ensure that everyone involved is competent, crime-free and able to build a safe, trustworthy and efficient sector,” said Mark Rutherford, GSC’s Director of Policy and Legislation.
The establishment of a medical cannabis sector has strong local support. A 2019 survey of islanders found that 95% of the population support the cultivation and manufacture of medicines on the Isle of Man, subject to appropriate rules.
However, this new legislation is only about export and does not change any national policy on local medical cannabis use, which is in line with current UK cannabis regulation and practice. The island’s Ministry of Health and Welfare is currently examining imports of medicinal cannabis products; Seek interest from pharmacy service providers in completing private prescriptions issued by clinics in the UK.
“The purpose of this method is to grant a single license to meet the needs of the island, while at the same time ensuring the governance and security of the installed systems,” says the relevant preliminary information. “This route will also eliminate the need for single import licenses, which individuals need every time they want to obtain a privately prescribed CBMP.”
The EOI closes today.