Marijuana Taxes Could Raise GBP 1 Billion in the UK
March 9, 2016 Taxation in UK
LONDON – A prominent political party in the UK has released a framework for the legalization of marijuana, calling for the drug to be sold in specialized stores with full government regulation and taxation.
On March 8th the UK Liberal Democratic party released a new report on the possibility of legalizing the sale, consumption and production of marijuana in the UK, claiming that the move would not only raise up to GBP 1 billion in extra tax revenues each year, but also minimize the harm by the drug to society.
The new report, touted as the most comprehensive framework for marijuana regulation in the UK to date, calls for introduction of a new regulatory body which will oversee the legal sale of marijuana in specialized stores, the taxation of marijuana sales, marijuana production, and the pricing and packaging of marijuana products.
The report did not call for a specific taxation mechanism for the sale of marijuana, but suggested that the tax could be based on the weight, value or potency of the drugs sold.
The exact taxation method which should be implemented would also depend on whether the government would impose any pricing controls, and whether the production would be handled entirely by a government entity or private commercial growers.
It was estimated that the potential tax revenues which could be gathered from marijuana sales could be between GBP 500 million and GBP 1 billion per year.
In the report it was also claimed that “…the health risks associated with the use of cannabis are more effectively managed and minimised through a responsibly regulated market and public health interventions rather than an unregulated criminal market and punitive criminal justice response.”