Zimbabwe shelves plan to issue cannabis farming licences

Zimbabwe’s government has put on hold a decision to legalize the growing of cannabis in the country, with authorities saying they need to carry out feasibility studies.

The U-turn comes less than a month after the government gazetted licence fees for the farming of cannabis for medicinal purposes.

Following that move, the authorities received more than 350 applications.

The fee gazetted for the farming of the crop was a US$50,000.

The permit was however only for people planting it for scientific purposes.

Despite polarizing public opinion, the government had proceeded with the controversial plans, to tap into a money spinning industry.

A number of Zimbabweans have since welcomed the decision to halt licensing pending more information.

The deputy minister of finance has said that if the plans resume, farming would likely be done on state owned farms and under strict controls.