The global drug trade is big business. It’s impossible to pinpoint how big. But a report from Bloomberg back in 2014 had a crack at it. They point out that in the US,
‘The country spent $109 billion in 2010 on illicit marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin, according to new (and very rough) estimates from the RAND Corp. prepared for the White House.’
That’s just the US. Imagine how big that makes the global market.
The UK’s National Crime Agency says drug trafficking costs the UK £10.7 billion per year.
Other estimates say 1% of the world’s revenue is via the illegal drug trade. That kind of reach finds its way everywhere. It is a social problem. It’s a crime problem. It’s a huge financial problem.
Money in trucks at the front door
In 2012 HSBC was hit with a £1.2 billion money-laundering fine. The bank let drug cartels move billions through their bank. They said they were unaware of the activity. But then again there were chances to raise a red flag or two…
The Mirror reported at the time,
‘[In 2012] a US Senate sub-committee found that the US arm of HSBC treated HSBC Bank Mexico, which transported seven billion US dollars (£4.5 billion) in cash in armoured vehicles to the bank in 2007 to 2008, as a “low-risk” client.’
Can you imagine that? Armoured trucks parking up at HSBC Mexico headquarters. They open the back doors. What’s inside? Pallets of cash.
‘Hola Señor Banquero, this the money from “El Chapo’s” farming (cough) profits…’
Yep, nothing suspicious to see here Mr Regulator. We had no idea.
With that kind of behaviour it’s easy to see why Mexico’s President Enrique Nieto took a hard stance on the drug trade.
That is until this week.
Last Wednesday President Nieto published a new bill in Parliament. The bill officially legalises medical marijuana in Mexico.
That’s right, Mexico just legalised medical marijuana.
Nieto has been hard on drugs for some time. And he had good reason. Mexico had 21,000 homicides in 2016. Many of those drug related.
But since he took office in 2012 he’s come around to legalisation. He could see the existing drug policy didn’t work. And was actually causing many of the drug related homicides. So he decided to take small step forward and legalise medicinal marijuana. In April 2016 he said,
‘Our country has suffered, as few have, the ill effects of organised crime tied to drug trafficking. Fortunately, a new consensus is gradually emerging worldwide in favour of reforming drug policies. A growing number of countries are strenuously combating criminals, but instead of criminalising consumers, they offer them alternatives and opportunities.’
This is an extraordinary step forward. However, there are a few caveats. The government will control who can grow and sell it. And it can’t have more than 1% THC. That’s the mind-altering part of marijuana.
But that’s not so different to any other country that’s legalised marijuana.
To be honest, Mexico legalising medical marijuana isn’t a big surprise to us.
A growing number of US states are legalising its recreational use. Also just this year Canada passed legislation legalising recreational use. That will come into force by July 2018.
And of course this year Australia decided to legalise medicinal use too. Creating a surge of interest in ASX listed marijuana stocks.
We’ve said for some time, this is just the beginning. More and more countries will come around the to fact that marijuana isn’t the ‘Devil’s Lettuce’.
It has untold therapeutic benefits. In fact we’ve said before that marijuana may yet prove to be as big as the discovery and development of penicillin.
With Mexico joining the US, Canada and Australia in legalising medicinal marijuana, the ‘green boom’ is just warming up. We think that investing in the right medical marijuana companies now could set up investors for a huge windfall.
We’re so convinced about the potential we’ve prepared a special report for Aussie investors. This report shows you exactly how to cash in on this ‘Green Rush’. If you want to see how just click here to find out more.
Even the UK is starting to come around to marijuana
The list of countries coming around to the benefits of medical marijuana is growing. As the world understands more about its potential uses we anticipate more major countries will join the list.
One country we expect to legalise medical marijuana soon is the UK. The UK is one of the world’s largest consumers of marijuana. That’s even while the drug is still illegal.
But we think that’s going to change. Particularly if a country like Mexico can come around. If they can do it then surely the UK can as well?
And it’s already starting to gather momentum. The UK’s first publicly available dedicated marijuana research facility is set to launch this northern summer.
The Independent reports,
‘Cannabinoid biotechnology company MediPen is launching its own dedicated 1,800ft sq marijuana research facility this summer, which will also provide a platform for anyone looking to utilise its facilities for the purposes of driving innovation around the use of medicinal cannabis.’
We actually have history with MediPen. A few months ago we purchased one of their vaporisers. Don’t worry, MediPen’s vape is perfectly legal. That’s because it only uses CBD extracts combined with medical grade coconut oil.
And it’s the CBD part of marijuana that may prove to be nature’s ‘wonder drug’.
This facility in the UK might just tip things in favour of legalisation here. If it does we could see a huge surge in a medical marijuana companies. It could be like the ‘mad marijuana rush’ of October 2016.
Look, to be honest the details of how these therapies work are complex. It’s not just, ‘Here smoke some weed, you’ll be fine.’ It’s a whole new area of medical research.
That’s why we’ve spent over a year researching this opportunity. And it’s why we put together a special report on it all. Our report shows how everyday Aussie investors can potentially profit from this massive marijuana boom.
We think it’s an exciting time for the medical marijuana industry.
Mexico has shown that anyone has the ability to change views. Now we expect a hoard of other countries to follow.