SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – The government’s highest advisory body, the Council of State, has thrown its weight behind criticism of plans to begin trials of regulated marijuana production.
The organisation says the experiment should be bigger than the government has determined, a criticism made last month by a panel of experts set up to develop the proposals.
The Council of State, which points out the experiment conflicts with European law and United Nations’ treaties, states that the trial must be ‘useful, believable and scientific’ to have any merit.
But the experiment as now planned – with just six to 10 councils taking part over a four-year period – will not be big enough to allow useful conclusions to be drawn, the council said.
In June, the commission working out the practicalities said the government’s plan is not wide enough to be properly representative and to allow methodological analysis.
The experiment with regulated growing is supposed to remove the gray area between the sale of marijuana in council-licenced coffee shops and the illegal cultivation and supply.
However, justice minister Ferdinand Grapperhaus and health minister Bruno Bruins, who are in charge of the project, have rejected the criticism. ‘The cabinet believes that it is feasible to carry out a useful and scientifically relevant experiment within the current legislative proposals,’ the ministers said.
The draft legislation is due to be debated in parliament this autumn. (DutchNews)