Prince Edward Island weighs government-run cannabis stores

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Another Canadian province is signaling that recreational marijuana could be sold through a government-run monopoly, which would severely curtail business opportunities for entrepreneurs wanting a piece of the retail pie.

Prince Edward Island Premier Wade MacLauchlan told CBC News that his province is considering stand-alone, government-run stores for the sale of adult-use cannabis versus privately owned retail outlets.

Neighboring New Brunswick is also leaning toward a government-run marijuana monopoly, while in Quebec, a forum of experts commissioned by the province concluded that “a monopoly is the option that offers the best guarantees for achieving public health and safety objectives.”

“There seems to be a position emerging, if you look at the other provinces, that it should be public, (for) reasons we can likely understand, and that it should be sold apart from where alcohol is available,” he said.

PEI, Canada’s least populous province, is currently seeking public input on cannabis before it tables legislation next spring, ahead of the federal government’s planned July launch of adult-use sales.

The provinces have until next summer to come up with regulations on taxation, retail, public consumption and home cultivation.

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