Malawi Cannabis Authority justifies US$10,000 licence fee

The Cannabis Regulatory Authority has justified the US$10,000 (about K7.6 million) licence fee for a cannabis cultivation licence.

Following the publication of a government notice on licence fees related to cultivation, distribution and sell of cannabis and industrial hemp, Malawians took to social media to protest against the fees saying indigenous Malawians will not afford to cultivate the crop.

But acting director general of the Cannabis Regulatory Authority Dr Ketimo Salipira has claimed that when coming up with the fees they considered that farmers would come together and form cooperatives.

He, however, assured the general public that the authority will look into the concerns.

Chairperson of the parliamentary Committee on Agriculture has since urged the authority to revise the fees in order to ensure that Malawians are involved in the cannabis industry.

According to the regulations, for every application made regarding Cannabis, a farmer will have to pay US$1,000 non-refundable and US$500 for industrial hemp.

People who want an application to process cannabis will party way with US$10,000 for a processing licence while for industrial hemp the fee is US$5,000.

A licence to store cannabis is pegged at US$500 while a licence to transport cannabis is at US$2,800.

For private hospitals, they will pay US$500 to administer cannabis as drug with government hospitals required to pay US$200 for the same purpose.