Is cannabis legal in Laos

The stoner atlas: where are cannabis, hashish and marijuana allowed?

“Green Revolution” in the USA: Since 2014, marijuana has been legal to buy in Colorado. Weed fans celebrate this with joints on New Year's Eve. Others smell big business.

But what about in the other states of the USA? How in Europe? Asia? Where is the cannabis plant allowed to grow?

Where can marijuana (the flowers of the plant) or hashish (made from cannabis resin) actually be owned and consumed - for example smoked as a "joint"?

What is the current legal situation in Germany, where so-called “coffee shops” are also being discussed? BILD gives an overview.

United States

The individual states decide on the sale and consumption of cannabis substances.

Colorado goes the furthest. Since January 1, 2014, US citizens over the age of 21 have been legally allowed to buy and consume marijuana and hashish here. Selling biscuits and chocolate with hashish is also allowed. However, all sellers require a special license.

The amount is limited to one ounce (that's about 28 grams) per day for citizens of Colorado! Visitors from other countries are "only" allowed to buy about 7 grams a day.

In seven other US states and the capital Washington D.C. Marijuana is fully legalized and can be purchased for medicinal use in 30 states.


Our neighboring country is considered a stronghold of stoners.

It is easy to overlook the fact that cannabis cultivation is prohibited in the Netherlands, as is the consumption or sale of hashish or marijuana.

And yet the stuff is available nationwide in so-called "coffee shops" - ihen the cultivation, sale and consumption of soft drugs in these shops has been officially tolerated in the Netherlands since 1976.

Prerequisite: a maximum of 5 grams per day and person, no advertising, no admission for minors.

However, since January 2013 the cities and municipalities have been able to decide whether they tolerate “coffee shops” or impose additional requirements.

The attempt in the south of the Netherlands to ban the sale to drug tourists in the border regions with Germany and Belgium and only allow Dutch people to get drunk had previously failed: It had led to a sharp increase in illegal drug trafficking on the street therefore quickly withdrawn.

Czech Republic

The Czech capital Prague has been known as the "Amsterdam of the East" for years.

Because a law from 2010 allows all adults the possession of certain amounts of drugs for "personal use". The following are therefore legal: 15 grams of marijuana, 1 gram of cocaine, 1.5 grams of heroin, 4 ecstasy pills, 5 units of LSD and 2 grams of amphetamines.

In addition, everyone in the Czech Republic can grow up to 5 cannabis plants.

According to the law, trading is still illegal. Since February 2013, cannabis substances may only be sold for “medical use” - with a prescription.

However, the generous amounts of “personal use” have led to heavy smuggling, for example to the neighboring federal states of Saxony and Bavaria or to Austria.

The liberal law was also overturned by the Constitutional Court in August 2013: flat-rate exemption limits are not permitted, the quantities would have to be determined for each individual case through legal proceedings.

The government must now make corrections accordingly.


In contrast, the legislation in Thailand, as in many other countries in Southeast Asia, is much stricter.

The Thai government is fighting drug cultivation, especially on the western border with Myanmar, and is also taking strict action against any drug possession. Much marijuana and hashish is also smuggled in via the eastern neighboring countries of Laos and Kabodscha.

Cannabis substances are treated no differently here than heroin or coke.For vacationers this means: be careful!

Any possession can mean immediate arrest. Depending on the amount, legal proceedings will follow several weeks later.

There is a risk of fines and even imprisonment, and in addition, they are usually deported for life.


Strict laws but little prosecution - this is France's approach to cannabis products.

There is a risk of a fine of up to 40,000 euros - and imprisonment! Cannabis substances like marijuana and hashish are treated like hard drugs in our neighboring country.

According to the anti-drug legislation (from 1970), anyone who wears the leaf of a cannabis plant on clothing or as jewelry is a criminal offense. However, this only applies to paper.

In fact, consumption is tolerated in France. Following the example of Dutch “coffee shops”, the first “Cannabis Social Club” was opened in April 2013 in the Vendeé region near the Atlantic coast.

However, this toleration is politically very controversial. The socialist interior minister Manuel Valls rejects a change in the law, and the authorities responded to the “Cannabis Social Club” in Vendeé with a formal objection.


The country in South America is the first country in the world to have legalized the cultivation of the intoxicant plant.

Parliament approved the bill in mid-December 2013, and President José Mujica signed the bill on December 25th.

Since then, private individuals have been allowed to grow a maximum of six cannabis plants.

In addition, up to 45 small producers can join forces in clubs, but they are only allowed to grow a maximum of 99 plants. Entry in a register is required.

It is legal to buy up to 40 grams of marijuana per month in pharmacies for private consumption.

Cannabis substances remain prohibited for minors. And: Those who plant without government permission can be punished with up to ten years in prison.


And here?

Many celebrities have confessed to smoking weed. But what does the law say?

Basically: The cultivation, possession or passing on of narcotics is prohibited and constitutes a criminal offense! Anyone who violates it faces a fine or up to five years in prison.

This includes growing cannabis and owning or consuming marijuana and hashish. In practice, however, judges have repeatedly recognized quantities exempt from penalties for personal use - usually between two and ten grams.

However: there is no claim to that! Anyone who owns cannabis substances faces trial and conviction.

The only exception: For medical reasons, the “Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices” (subordinate to the Ministry of Health) can issue an exception permit.

This means that marijuana can be purchased as a drug in the pharmacy.

The Berlin district of Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg even wanted to use this exemption for a “coffee shop” based on the Dutch model, but the idea was called off.

The aim was actually to divest customers from the illegal drug trade and at the same time to ensure that medical staff and social workers were taken care of.

There was also a similar idea in Hamburg's trendy St. Pauli district.

Such projects are extremely controversial.