Countries that have legalized recreational use of cannabis are Canada, Georgia, Malta, Mexico, South Africa, Thailand, Uruguay and 21 states, 2 territories, and the District of Columbia in the United States and the Australian Capital Territory in Australia. Commercial sale of recreational cannabis is legalized nationwide in three countries (Canada, Thailand, and Uruguay) and in all subnational U.S. jurisdictions that have legalized possession except Washington, D.C. 

Countries that have legalized medical use of cannabis include Argentina, Australia, Barbados, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malta, Mexico, the Netherlands, New ZealandNorth Macedonia, Norway, Panama, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Rwanda, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Thailand, the United Kingdom, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Others have more restrictive laws that allow only the use of certain cannabis-derived pharmaceuticals. In the United States, 38 states, 4 territories, and the District of Columbia have legalized the medical use of cannabis, but at the federal level its use remains prohibited.

Cannabis Legalization Map

Global cannabis market is valued at $30.6 billion in 2021, an increase of about 44% over 2020.

Spending on legal cannabis worldwide is expected to reach about $50 billion by 2025 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13% from 2021 and hit $57 billion by 2027, while cannabis market in the United States and Canada is estimated to be about $46.5 billion and other $10.5 billion would go to other markets. The largest growth rate is predicted within the rest-of-world markets with projected $2 billion in 2027.

Key Trends:

  • The initial decision by many U.S. states and Canada to create medical-only cannabis regulations prompted many other countries to act similarly while legalization of adult recreational use in Canada and in more than 40% of U.S. states triggered a second wave of legalizing laws internationally to increase access to cannabis products.
  • In the seventh edition of the European Cannabis Report – produced by London-based advisory group Prohibition Partners – Europe’s cannabis market is projected to be worth €354 million by the end of 2022 and to grow with a CAGR of 60% to reach €2.3 billion by 2026.
  • The size of the Latin America cannabis market has an estimated market value of $400 million in 2021 and is projected to be driven by Mexico with a CAGR of 104%. Mexico is expected to account for nearly 32% of legal cannabis spending outside the U.S. and Canada.
  • According to a New Frontier Data report, Africa with over 10% of global cannabis demand will rank fourth after North America, Europe and Latin America.
  • Oceania’s legal cannabis market is forecast to grow from about $100 million in 2021 to $1.2 billion in 2027, the 5th largest in the world.
  • Israel has a small population and a long history of legal medical cannabis use. It continues to be a leader over the years in the development of cannabis pharmaceuticals.


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Cannabis Legalization Map by State.