The CIBC World Market statistics reveal that Canada can gain up to $5 billion annually through tax revenues if it legalizes marijuana. The report also states that by legalizing pot, the country can create a $10 billion industry. With around 12% Canadians admitting to smoking the weed, there can be more out there who are using it illegally. So, the industry can be much bigger than anticipated.
Moreover, if the figures of tourist that cross the border to purchase pot are considered, the number can be much more.
Using marijuana legalization model of Colorado
According to the new reports, the provincial and federal Canadian governments can reap the benefits by selling legal marijuana. The experts suggest that the country should use the legalization model of Colorado as an ideal to draft a legalization plan. In Colorado alone, the total spending on marijuana touched $700 million in 2014, and yielded licensing, and tax revenues of $75 million for the state government.
Avery Shenfeld, CIBC economist have derived figures by using the Canadian recreational pot consumptions estimates. He also took into consideration other factors such as revenue experience in those American states that have legalized the use of recreational pot and rates of ‘sin tax’ on tobacco and alcohol. Considering all these things, Shenfeld concluded that the country could earn $5 billion per year if it decides to legalize the cannabis, which is 0.25% of GDP.
The Liberal government of Canada has already decided to legalize, tax and regulate the weed. Former Toronto police chief, Bill Blair will be the head of the team that will investigate the new regulatory model. Prime Minister Trudeau said that the legalization will not be used as a means to generate cash, but the revenue thus received will be used to take care of the addictions and mental health issues.
During his interview in December, the prime minister said that marijuana legalization will always be used for public safety and public health.