CBD in Slovakia – A Banned Substance

It is an antispasmodic, it reduces stress and anxiety. It is used to treat some forms of epilepsy. It can ease severe pain. And yet in Slovakia, you can not buy this plant extract legally. We are of course talking about CBD, a substance derived from the cannabis plant.

Because of its affiliation with cannabis, Slovak legislation considers the extract a psychotropic substance and therefore will not allow its sale within their country.

The main issues regarding this substance in Slovakia involves the sale of supplements containing CBD. Cannabis Pharma recently launched four different CBD applications including cartridges for electronic cigarettes, inhalers, tinctures and tablets.

While almost all other EU countries permit the sale of these products, in Slovakia it is classed as a criminal offence.

“We would like to extend our business to Slovakia, but given the current applicable legislation, this is not possible,” said a spokesperson for Cannabis Pharma.

One of the key propositions of free movement of goods within the EU is the principle of recognition between Member States. “This means that if the goods are marketed in one Member State they must be admitted to the market in the second,” explains Viliam Karas of the law firm Fish & Maple. While there are permissible restrictions in order to protect public safety, health or morals, CBD has never been considered a public safety threat in any of the 27 EU countries, except Slovakia.

In 2011, Slovak parliament ruled CBD into Group 2 of the Psychotropic Substances Act, which means that the handling, import and export from the Slovak Republic requires the consent of the Ministry of Health. However, the ruling was actually for the drug Sativex, which contains both THC and CBD. Slovak parliament claimed they were unaware that Sativex contained any CBD but still refused to remove the cannabinoid from Group 2.

Liberal politician Martin Poliačik is hoping to remove CBD from the Psychotropic Substances List as soon as possible, pending an investigation into new trials by the Ministry of Health; “The Ministry needs more time to investigate the scientific studies on the health effects, so I did not move it for discussion at this moment in time.”

Reports suggest that no progress will be made regarding the legalisation of CBD until after 2016’s parliamentary election.

Originally posted by MediCann Slovakia

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