MedCan 2020: NZ to host first medicinal cannabis summit

By Te Ao - Māori News

New Zealand will hold its first medicinal cannabis summit, MedCan 2020, this week.

With over 700 registrations, the summit hosted by BioTechNZ will take place Monday and Tuesday this week at Aotea Centre in Auckland.

The summit was originally set down for March but was postponed due to Covid-19.

The event is sold out with healthcare professionals, industry, scientists, patient advocates and officials coming together over the two days.

Delegates will hear from over 30 world-leading and local subject experts, presenting either in-person or virtually. The summit follows Friday’s confirmation that recreational cannabis will remain illegal following last month’s referendum.

“Despite the recreational cannabis referendum falling just short, New Zealand is well placed to play a key role in the fast-growing global medicinal cannabis industry which is forecast to be worth US$55 billion by 2025,” says Dr Zahra Champion, Executive Director of BioTechNZ and MedCan Summit 2020 organiser.

“The benefits of New Zealand’s newest sector are enormous – both domestically and in export terms. Given the economic fall-out of Covid-19, it’s critical that our medicinal cannabis sector now thrives. So, it’s a really exciting time to all be coming together.”

The summit will ensure a greater scientific and medical understanding of cannabis, as well as explore the economic opportunities and navigate the new regulations which took effect in April.

“We are incredibly thankful to be able to host the event live and in person. We’re looking forward to a memorable step in the journey towards ‘New Zealand Inc’ becoming a medicinal cannabis research centre of excellence.”