It will now be legal to grow medicinal cannabis, as new laws come into effect across the country on Sunday.
The law change will allow for the Office of Drug Control (ODC) to accept licences to cultivate cannabis for medical reasons.
While the ACT government previously outlined plans in August for a medicinal cannabis scheme in the territory for users to access the drug safely, the new law is different from the ACT approach in allowing for cannabis to be grown legally.
The change also means medicinal cannabis will now be listed among the same drugs as other restricted painkillers such as morphine.
Cannabis grown for non-medicinal reasons will still be illegal, and applicants applying for licences have to demonstrate the site will be secure.
Canberran Laura Bryant, 21, had been using medicinal cannabis to help treat her chronic arthritis and said the law change was a positive step, although it could be a few years before people started to see the full effect.
"It's so exciting that we're catching up with the rest of the world," she said.
"In terms of sourcing it with the legalisation, it's still a long time before patients can get to a doctor and get [medicinal cannabis] prescribed. We'll have to wait for production for it to grow but it's in sight now."
Ms Bryant said while medicinal cannabis had been offering her pain relief after traditional medication had failed, doctors weren't acknowledging the treatment.
"No one except for my physiotherapist has been willing to discuss it as a suitable medication," she said.
"[Medicinal cannabis] has given me my life back and doctors aren't recognising it."
ACT Greens leader Shane Rattenbury said the law change was a step in the right direction, after he had been pushing for a medicinal cannabis scheme in the ACT for the past two years.
"I am pleased that there has been progress in the ACT over the last 12 months but we must ensure we are not falling behind the national movement," he said.
"There is no good reason why we should not have a fully operational scheme in the ACT within a year."
Brett Mitchell is the chairman of MGC Pharmaceuticals, a company that deals with medicinal cannabis, and said the decision was a watershed moment for the industry.
"We didn't envisage the law changes happening here for another three to five years," he said.
Mr Mitchell said that, while the industry was illegal in Australia until Sunday, it was estimated to be worth $100 million.
People will be able to apply for one of three licences, either for cultivation and production, research or manufacturing.
"The licence approval process will be very rigorous," Mr Mitchell said. "The site would have to be fully secured where there's only access for authorised people as well as ODC."