After Alberta’s government placed a temporary hold on the issuing of private cannabis retail licenses to businesses, the province has announced that they are re-opening the process.
According to a press release, Alberta Gaming, Liquor & Cannabis (AGLC) has plans to issue five new licences per week. During the process they will monitor the supply, hoping to prevent over extending the supply of cannabis, and avoiding shortages that led to the memorandum in the first place.
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“Due to a steady increase in AGLC’s cannabis supply, the moratorium on accepting new retail licence applications and issuing new retail licences has been lifted,” the regulator wrote in the release. “Lifting the moratorium supports economic development and the success of Alberta’s budding cannabis industry.”
The release also makes it clear that if the stability of inventory takes a “drastic downturn,” the AGLC will put the restriction back into place.
The AGLC is the province’s regulator of legal vice in Alberta. The provincial body is responsible for regulating private retail cannabis, the distribution of cannabis and operation of the province’s online cannabis store.
In November 2018, AGLC CEO Alain Maisonneuve said that only around 20% of the amount ordered by the province had been supplied by licensed producers, and they were unable to keep up with demand.
The regulator says they currently have 473 pending applications for individual storefronts. Currently, 115 applications have been approved and are awaiting their licence. At the new rate of distribution, it would take 23-weeks for all approved applicants to receive their licenses.