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17th July 2023
13th April 2023
Austria: Christian Stocker, general secretary of the governing People’s Party, has said the party is firmly against the idea of following Germany’s example in legalising recreational cannabis, media reports. “We firmly reject the legalisation of cannabis in Austria,” Stocker said. “A normalisation of cannabis use would only facilitate entry into drug abuse.”
23rd March 2023
Austria: Health minister Johannes Rauch’s office has confirmed to CannIntelligence that the sale of all hexahydrocannabinol (HHC) products, including leftover stock, is prohibited from today. The substance has been added to the New Psychoactive Substances Ordinance by order of the Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection.
28th February 2023
Austria: The Federal Ministry for Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection has notified the EU of a draft amendment to the Ordinance on New Psychoactive Substances in order to include hexahydrocannabinol (HHC) and its derivatives on the banned list. The Ministry of Health told the press: “If HHC is produced synthetically, it is currently not subject to the Narcotic Drugs Act in Austria and therefore not subject to any legal prohibition.”
8th February 2023
Austria: The opposition liberal party NEOS has put forward a motion asking the federal government to specifically include hexahydrocannabinol (HHC) in the New Psychoactive Substances Ordinance. It says: “While a reform of Austria’s addictive substances policy is more than overdue, making individual products widely available through loopholes in the law poses an enormous risk from a health perspective.” According to the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs, Health and Consumer Protection (BMASGK), hemp extracts are only legal if there is no possibility of abuse or intoxication.
20th September 2022
Austria: Transport minister Leonore Gewessler, of the centre-left Green Party, is drawing up a bill to place a legal limit on THC for driving a vehicle, similar to the alcohol limit, press reports. She said: “According to the impairment principle, a distinction must be made between consumption that may have taken place days ago and present ability to drive. Clear criteria for this would also mean simplification of the testing procedure.” The ministry is currently looking at the procedures already being used in some other EU countries.
19th July 2022
Austria: The Constitutional Court has unanimously rejected an individual application which sought to declare the private growing and consumption of recreational cannabis "unconstitutional". According to the court, cannabis legalisation is a political decision and not a legal or constitutional question.
18th July 2022
14th June 2022
Austria: The Constitutional Court is to consider whether the current law under which the personal cultivation, possession and consumption of cannabis are criminal offences is compatible with the Austrian Constitution. A verdict is expected in July.
31st May 2022
16th March 2022
Global: The 65th annual session of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs is taking place this week in Vienna. The Commission directs international drug policy and decides the scope of control of substances under the international drug conventions, as it did in December 2020 when it rescheduled cannabis and cannabis resin from Schedule IV to Schedule I of the Single Convention 1961. Although cannabis is not explicitly mentioned in the Commission's programme, there are various side events hosted by civil organisations that seek to spur public debate on cannabis.
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