Medicinal Cannabis

Barbados has added the Medicinal Cannabis sector to its suite of investment opportunities.

The country offers distinct soil types and environmental conditions, and together with sound regulatory standards and the capacity for Research and Development (R&D), Barbados is attractive for the growth and facilitation of a medicinal cannabis industry.

Barbados’ medicinal cannabis industry is being built to support a locally derived value chain from seed to sale. It is intended to facilitate the value-added development of cultivated Good Agricultural and Collection Practices (GACP) of medicinal cannabis strains, to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and production of cannabis products. The value chain will have Unique Selling Points (USPs) which are indigenous to Barbados. These will be bolstered by  R&D efforts to acquire local cultivar phenotypes.

On November 27, 2019, the Government of Barbados passed the Barbados Medicinal Cannabis Industry Act, 2019 (the Act). Under the Act, the Barbados Medicinal Cannabis Licensing Authority (BMCLA) was created and is responsible for:

  • Making policies, procedures and guidelines to establish the industry;
  • Regulating the medicinal cannabis industry;
  • Issuing licenses

Ownership requirements for investment

A license must be granted to conduct business in the local medicinal cannabis industry. At least 30% of a company, partnership, or co-operative society must be directly owned by a citizen of Barbados, a permanent resident of Barbados, a person with immigrant status for Barbados or a citizen of a CARICOM Member State to be granted  a license to participate in the local medicinal cannabis industry. Applicants must also be 18 years of age to be issued a license by the BMCLA.

The Barbados Medicinal Cannabis Industry Act, 2019 will allow for eight categories of licenses once the regulations have been finalised and the industry doors are open. Those eight licenses include:

LicenseeWho they can sell to:
CultivatorAny Licensee
Internationally (with an export license)
ProcessorAny Licensee
Pharmacies*
Pharmaceutical Distributors*
Internationally (with an export license)
ImportAny Licensee
ExportAny Licensee
Research & DevelopmentAny Licensee
Internationally
LaboratoryAny Licensee
Internationally
Retail Distributor (Therapeutic Facility)Any Licensee
Clients at the Therapeutic Facility
TransportAny Licensee

*All medicinal cannabis products must be approved by the Barbados Drug Service before being sold on the local market.

Cultivators and Processors License Tiers

The cultivation and processing licenses are issued according to the following tiers, as illustrated below.  Requirements for each tier will vary and match the particular scale of operations.

                                      Cultivators                                                  Processors

Application and license fees

Application fees are non-refundable, and all applicants approved for a medicinal cannabis license can pay in three installments.

Investors who are not Barbadian, CARICOM citizens or permanent residents will have to pay a due diligence cost.

All licenses are valid for five (5) years and the licensing fees are paid upon the approval of the application.

For more information on the Application process, licenses, and fees, visit www.bmcla.bb for the Application Guide Handbook as well as all of the Industry Guides.

To apply for a license, please click here.

For persons with general questions about the industry or specific questions about the applications/process, please contact the BMCLA concierge desk to speak to the client liaison officer at (246) 832-0975; clo@bmcla.bb.

Key Pieces of Legislation

Stakeholder Agencies

Contact us to learn more about investing in the Medicinal Cannabis industry.