A German company has raised some eyebrows after confirming a cannabis agreement with the Taliban. The multi-million dollar deal was finalized late last year but it has just been announced. CPharm is a German cannabis company located in Australia. Last November, the company Chief Financial Officer, Tony Gabites publicly denied having ever connected with the Taliban and called the rumors ‘media lies’. As it turns out, the rumors are true. With full support from the Taliban, CPharm will set up a cannabis processing facility in Afghanistan. Here are the details surrounding CPharm’s cannabis deal with the Taliban.
Cannabis Law in Germany
Recently, Germany’s longtime Chancellor Angela Merkel stepped down, allowing a new coalition government to govern the country. Shortly after that, the new German government announced its plan to legalize recreational cannabis and establish a legal market. At the beginning of January, the minister of the Federal Ministry of Justice, Marco Buschmann stated that the ministry was crafting cannabis regulations, but the date of legalization would be up to the Ministry of Health. To CPharm, this news was welcome but not unexpected.
Cannabis Law in Afghanistan
The cannabis plant is native to Afghanistan and has been grown there for generations. Because of its ideal conditions, outdoor harvests tend to produce high quality, large yields, making Afghanistan one of the top producers in the world.
In 1973, Cannabis and opium poppies were prohibited by King Zahir Shah and the US Government provided $47 million dollars to fund the initiative. The Taliban has always been known for being strictly against narcotics and harshly punishing those who defied these laws. Growing and using cannabis remained illegal until 2017 when the laws changed and allowed medical use.
Shortly after medical cannabis was legalized in Afghanistan, CPharm began looking into the country and drafted up plans for a production facility. At the time, the US was heavily involved in the countries politics and has an active presence there; but, they withdrew all their troops within four years. Shortly after, the Taliban quickly took over the country. Originally, there were concerns that the Taliban would not recognize this change in the law. It turns out that those fears were unfounded.
Costing an investment of $450 million, CPharm Afghan Company will be an Afghan-German joint cannabis venture. The location for company operations is set to be in the northern province of Balkh, near the capital, Mazar-i-Sharif. CPharm will provide cannabis seeds to Afghan farmers, who will grow and harvest the plant on legally sanctioned farms. Part of these crops will be dried, exported, and sold to European markets. The rest of it will be sent to the processing facility to be made into medicinal cannabis products.