Green Party in Finland Calls for End of Prohibition

The motion in Finland, carried by just two votes (183-181) has no official basis, but sets the tone for reform to move forwards.

Finland may not be first on anyone’s list when it comes to being an epicenter of cannabis reform, but even this Scandinavian country is now considering the same.

The Green political party of Finland, the Green League, is championing a policy of legalization and regulation of a nascent domestic cannabis market. While the move has no official basis on a legislative level, it marks the first time a political party in the Finnish parliament has called for the legalization of cannabis.

Given the fact that there appears to be only narrow support at the federal level at the moment, it is unlikely that the measure will move forward (for now). 

Cannabis in Finland

This region of the world is perhaps best known to outsiders as having lots of snow and occasionally cool, do it your-selfish furniture. Beyond this, however, cannabis reform has moved glacially, even at the pace seen in Europe, and many are growing impatient for prohibition to end.

The prohibition of cannabis in Finland specifically harks back to the mid-1960s although this being one of the most liberal parts of Europe, the criminalization of personal use has always been highly controversial. The national government achieved this goal however by 1972.

Fast forward to this century. In 2008, the Finnish government approved the use of medical cannabis flower (imported from Holland). As of 2017, Finland’s Supreme Court ruled that a sentence for an aggravated drug offense could be reduced, depending on the nature of the offender’s role in the same and the amount of illegal drugs involved.

In 2018, a national survey indicated that just 18 percent of Fins believed that adult use should be legal. In 2019, a citizen’s initiative to decriminalize gained 50,000 signatures to force the Parliament to consider it (it did not pass). 

Finland’s Narcotics Act states that the use or possession of any illicit drug (including cannabis) is a criminal offense. Punishments can range, depending on the amount involved, from a fine to six months in prison.

CBD, however, is legal, and limited amounts of hemp are grown in the country.

The fact that the issue of cannabis reform appears to be moving, no matter how glacially in Finland, is a good sign for this part of Europe.

Scandinavia, generally, has tough laws about cannabis use. Sweden allows only the medical use of cannabinoid-based drugs. In Iceland, in stark contrast, the entire cannabinoid discussion, even for medical use, is off the table. Norway has liberalized its cannabis laws (back in 2018) allowing for small amounts of possession in the country. The one exception is Denmark, which began a four-year medical trial in 2018 and is further considering a recreational trial in the near future. The country has one of the larger cultivation programs in Europe with over 40 licenses granted.

Given that agriculture only represents just over two percent of Finnish GDP, it is unlikely that a large cultivation industry will develop here. But imports, just like in Germany, and of the medical kind, could begin to show up here, particularly from neighboring Denmark.

Regardless, some kind of cannabis reform is clearly on the political agenda now—and that is a positive development, generally. There is also, at this point, no part of Europe where at least medical cannabis reform has been considered. Moving forward, beyond this, however, is going to be the next big hurdle, just about everywhere, including in Scandinavia.

It remains to be seen what will happen, but it’s clear that a change is coming to Europe when it comes to legal cannabis. 

  1. If u seen or heard people WHO oppose weed, IT makes me think IS Finnish people actually another race… And 70 when they criminalize weed here they vote 50/50 and how they settle it they toss a coin, how can people Even respect law what IS made by like that.

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  2. “citizen’s initiative to decriminalize gained 50,000 signatures to force the Parliament to consider it (it did not pass)”
    In fact, initiative is still under consideration, and we can expect parliamentary vote maybe within six to twelve months. List of experts to be heard by law committee is long, and they have not even began yet.

  3. Technically speaking, the plant is all natural, given by GOD for us to heal ourselves yet the system wants a piece of it? Technically speaking it should be legal in the first place, i do not know why this healing plant is illegal. Imagine those heroin users in the streets instead of heroin it would be cannabis. And all those suicidal people who have anxiety would not be tempted.

    The MAIN problem of the GOVERNMENT THE SYSTEM they do not care for the people, all they care is themselves! #openyourmind #changethesystem

  4. And last thing i want to say, no matter what you do in this present situation, people In black market are making tons of money without paying any taxes. And no matter what you do it is what is. You can’t stop it. LEGALIZE IT and tax it! Jeez!

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