Europe medical cannabis market, Davos report: Europe could be world’s largest medical marijuana market in 5 years

Europe’s three largest medical cannabis markets could double in size in 2019, making this a “transformative” year for the European market, according to a new report by United Kingdom-based analytics firm Prohibition Partners, launched alongside the Davos World Economic Forum.

The European cannabis market’s value skyrocketed last year, with 500 million euros ($560 million) already invested in the market, which was mostly funneled into distribution and cultivation licenses.

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That could just be the tip of the iceberg, according to the report, as European countries combine to become the world’s largest federally regulated medical cannabis market over the next five years.

In the near term, Europe’s three largest medical cannabis markets – Italy, Netherlands and Germany – will see patient counts more than double to a combined 225,000 this year.

Over the next decade, “The European Cannabis Report” predicts the total market for medical cannabis could surpass 58 billion euros.

“Europe is seeing a fast-paced wave of regulatory and legislative change,” the report notes.

“Throughout 2018, a swathe of European countries introduced, reviewed or announced future legislation to advance the legal cannabis agenda. The UK, Portugal and Malta have legalized medical cannabis products.”

The report breaks down commercial opportunities in production, processing, distribution and retail, digital and ancillary.

Other takeaways from the report include:

  • Serious access restrictions exist in the United Kingdom despite doctors being legally able to prescribe medicinal cannabis since Nov. 1, 2018.
  • 2019 could be a big year for the World Health Organization as it reassesses its position on medical cannabis.
  • MMJ is legal in 14 countries in Europe. Regulations are expected to evolve to improve patient access and allow business opportunities.
  • Germany, Italy and the Netherlands could see a medical cannabis market grow to 18 billion euros in the next decade.
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