Greece’s parliament has announced that cannabis is effectively legal for medicinal purposes.

“From now on, the country is turning its page, as Greece is now included in countries where the delivery of medical cannabis to patients in need is legal,” said Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

The joint ministerial decision reached by Ministers of Health and Justice was published in Friday’s edition of the Government Gazette.

It was noted that cannabis will no longer be classified as a Table A drug, where it was listed among the most restricted narcotics including heroin and LSD, to Table B which features methadone, cocaine and opium.

While there has yet to be an announcement regarding licensing, as part of the change it is expected that the state will have the right to give licenses for cultivation of medicinal cannabis.

Once the framework for cultivation has been completed, Prime Minister Tsipras said that the importation of cannabis-based medicines will be permitted.

The decision follows on from the Greek Ministry of Health announcement in July 2016 that a panel of experts would be discussing and analysing the prospect of legalising the drug for medicinal purposes.

The move is a particularly significant one for Greece, given the country’s restrictive drug laws which have a long history dating back to 1890.