Uruguay's government plans to sell cannabis for $1 per gram, the country's drug czar has said, in an effort to wrench the market away from illegal dealers.

The El Pais newspaper reported on Sunday that drug chief Julio Calzada said cannabis sales should start in the second half of 2014 at a price of $1.

A law has been passed in the lower house of Congress and is expected to clear the Senate later this year.

It would make Uruguay the first country in the world to license and enforce rules for the production, distribution and sale of cannabis for adult consumers.

Sales would be for locals only.

Source: AP