Germany will legalise recreational cannabis under its new coalition government after party leaders struck a power-sharing deal overnight.

Social Democratic member Olaf Scholz

The 2021 German election saw the Free Democratic Party (FDP) emerge as a kingmaker and form a ‘traffic light’ coalition with the Social Democratic Party (SPD) and The Greens, announcing that cannabis will be regulated and sold for adult use in licensed shops.

If the move to legalise recreational cannabis use goes ahead, Germany would become one of the largest cannabis markets in the world, bolstered by a population of 83 million and a successful medicinal market.

The plans for cannabis legalisation were laid out in a 180-page document that explained the coalition’s legislative priorities for the next four years, and included other measures such as phasing out coal power and steps to tackle Covid-19.  

Under the coalition arrangement, SPD member Olaf Scholz is in-line to replace Angela Merkel as chancellor, the first time the job has changed hands in 16 years.

Scholz said he expects the members of the three parties to vote on the deal within the next 10 days, after which it will be binding.

Hannah Adler

Hannah is a communications professional and early-career researcher in the disciplines of health communication and health sociology. She is a PhD student at Griffith University currently writing a...