Thailand’s House of Representatives passed a bill regulating the sale and cultivation of kratom yesterday after it was removed from the narcotics list.
Lawmaker voted 281 to 0 with one abstention to pass the kratom bill after the legislation was vetted by a House scrutiny committee. The kratom bill will now be tabled for deliberation by the Senate.
Thailand’s Justice Minister the right honorable Mr Somsak Thepsutin said the kratom bill’s removal from the narcotic plants list means people can now posses, consume and use it legally for medical purposes.
The kratom bill will also regulate the imports and exports of the plant. Those importing and exporting the kratom leaf must be licensed by the Thai government.
The Justice minister also added that the regeneration, planting and sale of the plant is permissible in most cases, although certain restrictions will apply. The restrictions are listed in the Kratom bill.
The house scrutiny committee said the over consumption of the leaf could harm the health of young people, pregnant women and above all breast feeding mothers.
Because of this they added a clause in the bill restricting the sale, advertising and consumption of kratom leaf for those groups. The advertising of the plant is legally permissible unless it is done with the intent to encourage consumption of the illicit cocktail known as “4×100”.
The house scrutiny panel observed that kratom leaf has many useful properties. The plant has opioid and stimulant effects and has long been used in almost every region of the country. For example, farmers chewed the leaves of the plant to get their energy while working in their fields.