The Bis Weekly News Update – April 21 to April 28

What time is it? Cannabis news time!

The weather hasn’t been kind across some of the country this week (hang in there!), but hopefully everyone is keeping dry, warm, and up-to-date on the latest in the cannabis industry.

If not, don’t worry. The Bis is back again for another week with all the canna-developments of the past seven days.

British stockbroker is offloading Canadian cannabis stocks

IG Group Holdings Plc wants to sell its clients’ cannabis shares before the end of May after seeking legal advice, the Sunday Telegraph reported, without saying where it got the information.

Aurora Cannabis Inc., Aphria Inc. and New Age Beverages Corp. are among stocks affected by the decision, according to the newspaper. IG told clients that activities such as a cannabis index, contracts for difference trading and spread betting on cannabis stocks wouldn’t be affected, the newspaper said.

“Under English law, U.K. investors that hold shares or invest in companies whose business activities involve the cultivation of cannabis or sale of cannabis-related products are likely to be at risk of committing a criminal offence,” law firm Macfarlanes LLP said on its website in January.

London-based IG said there’s been an “absence of clear rules or guidance” on cannabis-related stocks, according to the Sunday Telegraph. The broker didn’t immediately respond to a Bloomberg News request for comment on Sunday.

O’Cannabiz conference goes off in the GTA  

The O’Cannabiz Conference & Expo, the country’s largest cannabis business conference wrapped up three days of awards, networking, and canna-connection in Ontario this weekend.

Featuring dozens of talented and insightful industry speakers in all manner of positions in the cannabis field, the event offers three days of socializing, education, and seriously chill after events.

Big industry names were on hand to make speeches, including Henry Rollins, Krishna Andavolu, Chief Christian Sinclair, Montel Williams, Chuck Rifiki, and more of the biggest rising stars in legal cannabis.

The event offered opportunities to learn from some of the best in the biz at numerous talks, seminars, and networking events. Whether you’re a cannabis expert looking to make your next big deal or a newbie looking to dip your toe into the murky green waters of a new industry, this is the place to start.

Needless to say, The ‘Bis was in the house! If you didn’t make it out, we’ll see you next year.

500% spike in Hong Kong mail-order cannabis seizures blamed on Canada

Hong Kong officials are reporting a massive spike in mail order cannabis seizures, and those close to law enforcement in the Chinese Special Administrative Region believe that Canada is to blame.

According to a recent report in the South China Morning Post, law enforcement and customs officials in Hong Kong have noted a massive influx of cannabis being shipped in from North America into the country.

“Customs and Excise Department showed that 137 kg of cannabis – with an estimated street value of more than HK$30 million (US$3.8 million) – was confiscated by customs officers in the first quarter of this year,” wrote SCMP reporter Clifford Lo, “an increase of 500% compared with 22.7 kg in the same period last year.”

The article also notes that, according to “anti-drug sources,” Canadian cannabis legalization has softened many Hongkongers’ opinion on the drug. The same news outlet reports that a large scale cannabis conference took place in the winter of 2018, where over 200 cannabis entrepreneurs tried to woo investors, and promoted legalizing medical use within the region.

Police report ‘no major incidents’ at 420 Vancouver

Huge crowds descended on Vancouver’s Sunset Beach on Saturday to celebrate 4/20 for the 25th year. While the Park Board again chose to deny the event a permit, the protest still required the assistance of Vancouver’s policing and emergency resources to make sure everyone was safe.

According to a release from the VPD, the crowd peaked at “just before 4:30 in the afternoon.” Police estimate that 60,000 people attended the event alongside over 400 vendor tents.

Police report no major safety incidents connected to the 4/20 revellers, however, there were over a dozen medical emergencies on the beach, police say.

“VPD officers assisted BC Emergency Health Services with more than 14 medical emergencies,” they wrote, in the release. “Traffic enforcement officers issued more than 30 tickets and investigated three people for impaired driving.”

The problems aside, the city’s emergency services seem content with how the event proceeded from their perspective.

“Today was a good example of remarkable teamwork between the Vancouver Police, fellow first responders, the Vancouver Park Board, and the City of Vancouver,” says Sergeant Jason Robillard, Vancouver Police Department, “allowing for a safe environment during a large scale event.”

In the days leading up to the protest, Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart said that organizers would be receiving a bill for the costs incurred by the city.

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