(CNN) Recreational marijuana use will soon be legal in Canada after the Senate passed a “historic” bill on Tuesday with a vote of 52-29.
Canada is only the second country in the world — and the first G7 nation — to implement legislation to permit a nationwide marijuana market.
Bill C-45, otherwise known as the Cannabis Act, stems from a campaign pledge of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to keep marijuana away from underage users and reduce related crime.
The act to legalize the recreational use of weed was first introduced on April 13, 2017, and was later passed at the House of Commons in November. The Senate passage of the bill was the final hurdle in the process.
Although the Canadian government had initially stated its intent to implement by July 2018, provinces and territories, who will be responsible for drafting their own rules for marijuana sales, have advised that they would need eight to 12 weeks after the Senate approval to transition to the new framework.
The government is expected to choose a date in early or mid September.
The bill set a floor on the minimum age of the consumer at 18 years, and makes the production, distribution, or sale of cannabis products an offense for minors.
While provinces can increase the minimum age, the intent is to continue to discourage Canadian youth from pot use, by establishing many of the same restrictions that exist for cigarettes and other tobacco products.
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(NEWS AND PHOTO CREDIT: CNN NEWS FILE)