A meeting of senior officials at the Justice Ministry has agreed that krathom leaves should be taken off the list of banned substances. 

The Office of the Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) has backed a move by the Justice Ministry to decriminalise kratom, saying that it does not believe that the move will affect its efforts to combat the drug trade in Thailand. 

Krathom is categorised as a drug in the 5th category of the Narcotics Act, alongside cannabis and psychotropic mushroom species, although its use commands lighter penalties than those substances.

Mr Chaikasem said the meeting agreed the leaves of the plant were traditionally used by people to boost their energy levels, and that is is not harmful to health.

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