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Philippines firm ventures into medical marijuana

Richmond Mercurio - The Philippine Star
Philippines firm ventures into medical marijuana
Greenergy in a stock exchange filing said it acquired 51 percent of Yakuru Group Pty. Ltd. (YGPL), which recently introduced its Yakuru line of cannabidiol (CBD) or medicinal marijuana products in Australia.
Michael Varcas, file

MANILA, Philippines — Greenergy Holdings Inc. of businessman Antonio Tiu has acquired a majority stake in an Australian firm, expanding the listed company’s portfolio to include biotechnology.

Greenergy in a stock exchange filing said it acquired 51 percent of Yakuru Group Pty. Ltd. (YGPL), which recently introduced its Yakuru line of cannabidiol (CBD) or medicinal marijuana products in Australia.

The Philippine-listed company, through the Yakuru Group, will be focusing on development and global marketing of medical hemp and its primary byproduct, CBD oil.

Greenergy said its entry into the flourishing CBD industry comes after the recent decision of Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration for over the counter cannabidiol sales without prescription, which led to a significant jump in share prices of CBD firms listed in the Australian Securities Exchange.

CBD oil, it said, has been well received in Australia and other parts of the world, as it is used for pain management, anxiety disorders and a host of other physiological conditions without getting “high.”

“We want to bring the many benefits of CBD to those afflicted by ailments without an appropriate solution in Australia, the Philippines and other parts of the world,” Stewart Adams of Yakura Group said in a statement.

Tiu, Greenergy president and CEO, said he saw great opportunity and invested in the Australian firm ahead of the Philippine government’s plan of opening up importation of CBD oil for medicinal purposes.

“The Philippines alone has a population five times bigger than Australia. We want to provide people suffering from various severe illnesses worldwide with this miracle oil to help alleviate their pain,” he said.

The Yakura Group expects more CBD orders to be processed and shipped globally by its Colorado-based subsidiary Yakura LLC, as recent test marketing of Yakuru CBD oil in Australia proved to be “a big hit.”

Marijuana use remains illegal in the Philippines for recreational purposes, but the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) recently announced that the approval of a cannabis product for compassionate use could pave the way for CBD importation, subject to approval by DDB and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency.

Tiu said Greenergy’s Australian public company affiliate Plentex Ltd. has also been investing in biotech for agricultural and medical purposes from plants and algae in line with the push towards health and wellness using natural components.

He said the firm is also preparing to do backward integration into plantation of medicinal hemp in New South Wales and Queensland and export to the rest of the world.

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